Ainge Tells Tony Allen he was Dealt for #2 Pick

June 29, 2005
WALTHAM The Celtics hosted their now traditional draft party last night at the Sports Authority training center. The festivities officially started when executive director of basketball operations Danny Ainge stepped to the podium for a draft preview. Ainge silenced the crowd by joking he had traded Tony Allen for the No. 2 pick. Allen wasn't sure what to make of the announcement. After a couple of moments, Ainge finally said, "I'm just messing with you. Sometimes our guys get too full of themselves."


Ryan Gomes: Long Wait for Short Drive

June 29, 2005
WALTHAM Ryan Gomes's agent thought his former Providence star might go at 18. Celtics boss Danny Ainge considered picking him there.

   But not with Gerald Green still on the board.

        So when Gomes was still around for the Celtics to select at the 50th pick of last night's NBA Draft, the choice . . .? Well, there really was no choice.


The Orien and Gerald Party

June 29, 2005
WALTHAM By the time the Celtics took Orien Greene as the 53d pick in the NBA Draft last night, there was no champagne popping at the Celtics training facility. The draft party had long departed, most leaving after Boston's first-round pick earlier in the evening.

   In fact, much of the reaction came in question form:



Celtics will be Green(e)

July 24, 2005
What you now see, apparently, is what you're going to get. The Celtics' 2005-06 season may not start for several months, but their roster looks pretty much set. The only wrinkle: the destination of Antoine Walker and who might come in return.


Celtics Take Another Prep Star

June 29, 2005
WALTHAM When the phones started ringing non-stop in the draft war room minutes before they made the No. 18 selection, the Celtics knew they had lucked out with Gerald Green. No one expected the Houston high school phenom to last past the lottery selections. But after Portland did not take Green at No. 6, Boston thought there was a chance he might slide. Maybe to No. 10. When the 6-foot-8-inch wing player fell out of the top 12, executive director of basketball operations Danny Ainge started "begging" the basketball gods that Green be there at No. 18. And when he was, the Celtics' celebration began in earnest.


Gerald Green Watches his Stock Fall on Draft Day

June 30, 2005
Here's my take on Gerald Green: He may be the next Tracy McGrady although Chris Wallace thinks he's closer to Rashard Lewis but the last thing the Celtics needed in this draft was a high school kid. That's three in three years since Danny Ainge took over, and while everyone has Al Jefferson penciled in for Springfield, remember that he didn't even play 15 minutes a game last season.


Celtics Get Younger Still

June 29, 2005
The young get younger.

The average age on the Boston Celtics roster was 25.33 years old before last night at 9:15 pm. After grabbing 19-year-old high school phenom Gerald Green with the 18th pick in the 2005 draft, the Boys in Green will now feature seven players on their roster who are 23 or younger.


Gerald Green Reminds Doc of McGrady

June 29, 2005
WALTHAM - When the phones started ringing non-stop in the draft war room minutes before they made the No. 18 selection, the Celtics knew they had lucked out with Gerald Green. No one expected the Houston high school phenom to last past the lottery. But after Portland passed at No. 6, the Celticsthought there was a chance he might slide. When the 6-foot-8-inch forward fell out of the top 12, executive director of basketball operations Danny Ainge started "begging" the basketball gods that Green be there at No. 18. And when he was, the Celtics' celebration began in earnest.


Lakers May Trade Up to get Gerald Green

June 27, 2005
HOUSTON In a strip mall on South Post Oak road, directly across the street from an unkempt stretch of undeveloped land, sits Gulf Shores Academy. It is neither on the gulf nor on the shore; a Google hit of the two words will give you more information than you need to know about Hurricane Arlene.


Dah Gahden Returns (sort of)

July 2, 2005
Go ahead, call it the Garden again.

   That's the message that TD Banknorth Inc. and the owner of the former FleetCenter are promoting this week, as the home of the Boston Bruins and Celtics is officially renamed the TD Banknorth Garden. The Maine bank made a huge bet this year when it promised to pay about $6 million annually a quarter of last year's marketing budget to put its name on the iconic arena.


Celtics Boost Prices

June 9, 2005
The future is now. At least that is the Celtics' new marketing slogan as they try to sell season tickets at slightly increased prices from last season. 


The One that Got Away

June 12, 2005
You can't help but wonder and sometimes wondering is a lot more fun than reality.

  You ask, what if certain things had happened and certain people had made different decisions and, well, it makes for a sobering, even haunting reality. Because when you see the teams that are competing in this year's NBA Finals, you think, with a little bit of luck and a little bit of rolling the dice, many of these same guys could be playing for the Celtics. Some of them, of course, already have.

        Without extrapolating too much, here is what Boston might have had.


Celtics Saw Been Wallace as 2-Guard

June 19, 2005
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. The claim leaves anyone who hears it laughing in disbelief. But Ben Wallace insists he started at shooting guard for the Celtics' Summer League entry more than a decade ago. During these NBA Finals, he has mentioned the ill-fated conversion to Boston swingman more than once. Considering the career as an undersized All-Star center that followed, each recounting brings out an understandable amount of pride.


Celtics Get New Radio Deal

June 24, 2005
The Celtics, who have always prided themselves on tradition, went back to the future in making WRKO (680-AM) their new radio home in a multiyear deal that was announced yesterday. WRKO had broadcast the team's games in two previous deals during the past 40 years: 1981-87 and 1995-96.

Rich Gotham, the Celtics' executive vice president of sales and corporate development, had decisions to make once the club's previous partner, WWZN (1510-AM), opted out of the final season of a five-year deal that would have gone through the coming season.

    The Celtics could have:


Rivers Not Ready to Sever Ties with Pierce

June 30, 2005
WALTHAM -   If coaching doesn't work out for Doc Rivers , he has a future as a diplomat or poker player. He gamely answered questions yesterday about Paul Pierce with a smile, though the fractious nature of their relationship was laid bare for all to see last season.


Ainge Understands Pierce's Frustration

June 25, 2005
WALTHAM Danny Ainge did not reveal any draft secrets, like what kind of player the Celtics might select at Nos. 18, 50, and 53 Tuesday night during the NBA Draft. In a news flash to no one, the Celtics'executive director of basketball operations will select the best player available regardless of position, age, or ability to make an immediate impact, though he acknowledged it's more likely the Celtics will select a player with college experience.


Paul Pierce for Ray Allen?

June 2, 2005

OK, everyone. Exhale. We've all had some time to stand back and examine the current state of theCeltics with a little less emotion and a little more practicality. Does that make Paul Pierce's Game 6 antics any less horrifying? Not really, but when you're talking about business sense, you better make sure you get something of equal value if you plan on shipping him out of town. For all his warts (including a maddening defensive indifference, at times), Pierce is still a big-time talent who can rebound and pass and fill it up. I don't see anyone who is available that offers the same skills. Ray Allen is a nice player, but he's no Paul Pierce.


McHale Reincarnating Familiar Role in Beantown

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Record: 6-1


The smile on Kevin McHale's face says a lot. His contract hassles are a thing of the past. He no longer feels inhibited in a Celtics offense that is imaginative and allows him to take advantage of all his skills. McHale seems to be having a ball coming off the bench for the Celtics, either as backup center to Robert Parish or backup power forward to Larry Bird. Backup, perhaps, isn't the right word. For, what McHale is doing is a reincarnation of the traditional Celtics "sixth man" principle, with a slight twist that has given the concept a new meaning.


Doc and the Strangler Rally Sixers Past Celtics

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Sixers 121-Celtics 114 (OT)
Record: 13-6

I'm not knocking our record or the character of my men. But I'm after perfection."- Sixers coach Billy Cuningham He sounded like the NBA version of Captain Queeg. Only Billy Cunningham was talking about his defending champion Philadelphia 76ers and not just your average ship of fools. Cunningham had just watched his club come from a 15-point deficit and put on one of those defensive efforts that only a game between the Celtics and 76ers could produce.


Celtics Pound Nuggets

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 119, Nuggets 90
Record: 16-6

If the Denver Nuggets want to learn something about defense, they should ask the Celtics, who brought their bag of tricks to the Civic Center for the first time this season and put on a clinic.Even with Larry Bird on the bench with strained knee ligaments, the Celtics shut down the high-scoring Nuggets and rode a 34-19 surge in the second period a 119-90 victory last night before a crowd of 13,374.Denver was simply overmatched, and in the last 15 minutes threw in the towel as Boston rolled to its third straight victory and seventh in the last eight games.


Celtics Stumble Past Pacers

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 100, Pacers 95
Record: 15-6

It had all the rhythm and artistry of your average tractor pull, but the Celtics aren't in any position to argue with last night's 100-95 victory over the NBA's worst entry, the still-brutal Indiana Pacers. The Celtics turned the ball over like a team of Wendell Tylers and shot as if they had spent two weeks under the tutelage of mason Charles Bradley, but prevailed thanks to 22 points from Kevin McHale, 21 from Robert Parish and 19 from the man who is to Indiana what Elvis was to Memphis - Larry Bird. There were 14 lead changes in the first half, which ended with Indiana leading, 53-52.


Celtics Steal Win over Dallas

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 114, Mavs 109 (OT)
Record: 24-8


It was a year in which Larry Bird and Kevin McHale became millionaires, while Harry Mangurian and Bill Fitch sold out. It was a year in which the Milwaukee Bucks humbled the Celtics in a four- game playoff sweep - which led to sweeping changes in the off-season. In a gritty and intense 53 minutes, the Green Team said goodbye to 1983 with a 114-109 overtime victory over the Dallas Mavericks last night. The victory enabled Boston to close the year with the most wins in the NBA, a 12-3 December and a 7-0 lifetime record against the emerging Mavericks. The Celtics stole this one. They trailed most of the way and faced a six-point deficit with 2:39 left. "Mercy," said coach K.C. Jones. "Coming off a loss like last night's (in Houston) and then hanging in there tonight showed a lot of guts. We didn't quit."

The overtime was relatively simple compared with the end of regulation. Jones had his starting five on the floor for the entire extra period. Dennis Johnson opened the scoring, burying a jumper from 18 feet to put the Celtics ahead for good. Then Kurt Nimphius fouled Bird going for an offensive rebound, and Cedric Maxwell canned a 17-foot set shot from out top to make it 107-103 with 3:36 left. Brad Davis came back with two on a drive down the lane, but Maxwell drove on Jay (He Ain't Heavy, He's Fat) Vincent and scored as he was fouled. Maxwell made the free throw, and the Celtics were up by five with three minutes left. "When you get the first couple of baskets in overtime, it puts a lot of pressure on the other team," said Maxwell, who finished with 20 points. "Those five minutes go by awfully fast." Rolando Blackman (34 points) cut Boston's lead to 110-107 with a jumper, but Pat Cummings and Davis missed shots on Dallas' next three possessions. And when Larry Bird (36) scored on a drive with 36 seconds left, the Celtics led, 112-107, and you could hear Don Meredith humming "The Party's Over."

The Mavericks must feel somewhat jinxed against the Celtics. Dallas led by 10 points for a good portion of the game and held a 103-99 lead with 35 seconds left in regulation. But the fact that Mark Aguirre (22 points) had fouled out with 3:50 left didn't help, and neither did a flurry of late turnovers forced by the tenacious Celtics."We felt if we kept the pressure on 'em, we could probably break them," said Maxwell.After Davis' bomb had made it 103-99 with 36 seconds left, Bird (14 for 25 overall) came back seven seconds later and canned one from the top of the key. Dallas came back, and Davis dished off to Cummings underneath, but Cummings' shot missed, and Robert Parish grabbed the rebound. Still trailing by two, the Celtics called time with 7 seconds remaining.After the pause, Bird inbounded from midcourt to DJ."I had a few options," said Johnson (17 points, 6 assists). "I could flip it back to Larry or drive to the hole. But there's not much time for hesitation with seven seconds."DJ drove straight for the hoop and was fouled by Blackman with four seconds left. With great cool, he made both to tie it.

The Mavericks squandered their last chance. Vincent inbounded to Blackman, but under heavy pressure from DJ, Blackman stepped out of bounds as he caught the ball. The Celtics took one last shot, but it was an airball by Bird from the left corner and extra innings awaited.The Celtics would like to forget about the first 24 minutes. It was a lot like Thursday's Houston humiliation. The Celtics committed 11 turnovers (nine in the first period), shot 40 percent (16-40), played Denver Nugget defense, and trailed, 54-46, at intermission. the Celtics roared back in the third quarter. Down by 10, Boston started running and Gerald Henderson and Bird led a 10-4 run that trimmed Dallas' lead to four. Parish (four in the first half against the immortal Cummings) awoke from sleep's dark and silent gate, scoring eight points in the period, including a dunk that tied it at 64, and two free throws gave the Celtics their first lead (66-64) since 2-0. The Celtics hung on and led, 75-74, after three 1983-84


Celtics Finally Beat Sixers

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 105, Sixers 104

Record 29-8
January 14, 1984


It was one more jewel in the NBA junkyard, another 48 minutes of conventional land warfare between the Hatfields and McCoys of Basketball America. It seems that these two teams could play for 58, 68, or 108 minutes, and move the site to an aircraft carrier off Guam, and it would still be settled by one point or in overtime. The Celtics were the one-point winners last night. When Cedric Maxwell outdueled Moses Malone for a rebound of Julius Erving's errant 14-foot turnaround banker, the final buzzer sounded and the Celtics had a 105-104 roadhouse victory over the world champion Philadelphia 76ers.


Big Win Boosts Confidence

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 105, Sixers 104
Record 29-8

January 14, 1984

The missing piece fell into place Friday night in Philadelphia.

The 1983-84 Great Expectation Celtics had done everything except beat the Sixers. They won a league-high nine in a row early in the year, recovered from a four-game losing streak in November, then ripped off 19 out of 22. They clinched the All-Star coaching job for beloved coach K.C. Jones, and managed to build a small but tidy division lead over the hated world champs from Cheese Steak City.


McHale Dominates Pistons Again

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 129, Pistons 115
Record: 20-7

There are nights when Kevin McHale is the ultimate weapon, a Nike Ajax missile interjected into conventional warfare. As he has done so many times since he decided not to eat spaghetti in 1980, McHale took over a game for the Celtics last night. He scored eight straight and 10 of 12 in a devestating, 18-4 fourth-quarter Celtics run that turned a two-point Boston deficit into a 12-point lead.

When it was over, Boston had a 129-115 victory, and Mchale had 30 points and 16 rebounds. Thirteen of McHale's season-high total came in fourth-period crunch time. He has scored 107 points in four games against the Pistons this year. "He's a big problem for us, obviously," said Pistons center Bill Laimbeer (27 points, 15 rebounds). "He destroys us every time we play them. He has that good jump hook, which is difficult to block, and a fallaway that you can't even get close to."


Celtics Pound Glass for 19 Offensive Rebounds

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 105, Sixers 104
Record 29-8

January 14, 1984


Said Sixers coach Billy Cunningham: "The way these two teams play, we ought to just play the last minute."



Cornbread Posts 9 Dimes in Win

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 132, Pacers 125

Record 31-9

January 21, 1984

In a lackluster but very physical game, the Celtics wore down the aggressive Indiana Pacers, 132-125, last night before 13,134 at the Civic Center. Three Celtics hit for 20 or more points, with Larry Bird showing the way with 27, followed by Robert Parish and Kevin McHale with 22 each. But equally impressive with his unselfish play was Cedric Maxwell, who consistently fed his teammates, accumulating nine assists to go along with his 13 points.


Celtics End Season with Win


1983-84 Boston Celtics
Celtics 118, Nets 111

Record 62-20

April 15, 1984

It was like the last day of high school, when the seniors show up late, everybody goes around signing each other's yearbooks, and you put the future on hold for one final moment. The Celtics defeated the New Jersey Nets, 118-111, at the Garden yesterday afternoon. Greg Kite (13 points, 10 rebounds) started at center, M.L. Carr (10 points) opened at the power forward position, and Gerald Henderson (18 points) played for the first time since the Celtics wrapped up the NBA's best overall record 10 days ago.


Is Boston America's Best Sports City?

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Record: 20-7

Boston, USA.

Do you really I mean, do you really - appreciate all this town has to offer the sports fan? Unless you've been around to sample what's Out There, I don't see how you could. The Celtics. They are America's basketball team; oh, yes, they are. Had a guy call me the other day from down deep in Texas. Wanted to know when the next induction ceremonies would take place for the Basketball Hall of Fame. The guy was a John Havlicek fan and he sure wasn't gonna let ol' Hondo go into the Hall of Fame without paying his respects. Doubt if he's alone.

Travel the NBA for awhile and see what respect the Celtics have. There is no arena anywhere (even in xenophobic Portland, Ore.) where there aren't at least a few cheers when the Celtics score. In some buildings there's a helluva lot more than a few. They love 'em in the boonies, but we're the ones who have 'em all the time. The Bruins. Different crowd. Sometimes you get the feeling on a Sunday night that a lot of the people simply stuck around after the wrestling matches the night before. But they've got other fans who rival any group anywhere for knowledge and intensity.

The Bruins definitely attract the best voices. In a playoff game last year Gerry Cheevers sent Wayne Cashman over the boards. Someone sang out, "Hey, Chee-vuhs . . . have you lost yah mind?" Could have been the same guy I heard maybe 12 years ago on another occasion. Cashman - I swear - wound up for a slap shot and managed to get just a small piece of the puck. "What a bla-zuh, Wayne!" was the cry. The Garden. Here is a true love-hate relationship. C'mon, admit it. You want a cleaner, more comfortable building, but you would wind up missing the Garden, no matter which team you root for (not that you can't follow both). The banners wouldn't look the same in a new joint. There is a feel to the entire experience that would simply never be duplicated in some modern palace. There are buildings I'd trade the Garden for, but there are quite a few more that I wouldn't.

Fenway Park. In terms of good seating, it is overrated. Don't ever get stuck too far down the right field line. But what it offers could never be equalled. God bless The Wall, and the damnable door down the left field line and the gap inright- center and the treacherous right field foul line. It's always great to walk up the runway and get the first glimpse of that beautiful green grass (God bless Joe Mooney and his groundskeeping crew, while we're at it). There's even something magical about the place at night, especially if the Orioles or Yankees are in town. Please . . . don't start taking Fenway Park for granted.

Sullivan Stadium. OK, there is no discernible charm. It's a pain to get to and even worse to get out of. Yet it has truly outstanding seating. It was built for the purpose of watching football and nothing else, and there are only good and less good seats. Once in a while the team is even worth watching. All in all, this year wasn't too bad, was it?. But Boston is much, much more. It's more than the numerous colleges and high schools. Boston is Upton and Dave; Guy and Glenn; Eddie, Mark and Jim; Eli, George and Teddy; and that's just the beginning of the radio coverage, since any number of suburban stations also provide sports talk. This journal's sports coverage is enormous, and the guys up the road have come a long, long way in a year. Each TV station offers a superior sports product. Trust me: you would be instantly appalled if you could see what passes for TV sports in any other major locale.

Boston is the only city in the land where two major professional franchises (the Celtics and Red Sox) deliberately downplay All-Star balloting. While in attendance at a Boston sporting event, you are never insulted by a PA man saying, ". . . and here are your Boston Celtics," the way they do in other ports of call. There are no cheerleaders in Boston Garden (take note, messrs. Gaston, Dupee and Cohen) and there is no cheerleading organist, either, unless you consider John Kiley playing "Tico, Tico" during a timeout the height of rabble-rousing. Virtually every local team considers the press excessively negative, which is a very good sign for you, the consumer.

What's so good about Boston is that both the press and the teams seems to appreciate the sophistication of their constituents. Change is hard to come by in Boston. That's as it should be. There must be a reason why every radio, TV and newspaper person is besieged by friends from other cities wanting to know how they can get a job in Boston. There is. If you're going to cover sports for a living, this happens to be one of the very few places to do it. In fact, it may be the best. So, Merry Christmas, and thanks for everything.


Celtics Will Try to End Bucks Dominance

1983-84 Boston Celtics
Record 31-9

January 22, 1984

The Milwaukee Bucks have beaten the Celtics in seven of the last nine playoff and regular-season meetings between the two teams. It is a curious dominance, one that the Celtics are tired of being asked about. Before last weekend, it was easy to dismiss the 1983 playoff sweep as ancient history, but then the Celtics staggered through another nationally televised (106-87) humiliation at the Mecca last Sunday.

Words won't do it anymore. Larry Bird knows it doesn't matter what he says, so when asked about Milwaukee he slumps into automatic pilot: "They're a better team than we are right now. That's what you have to say from the way we've played against them." "I don't think anybody here cares about what people say or what people think; it's what we think that matters. We know we can beat anybody in the league. We just had a bad game against them. But the next game is a different story."

Today's Super Sunday special (1 p.m., Channel 4) features two of the league's hottest teams. The Celtics own basketball's best record and have won eight of nine. The Bucks shrugged off a losing streak with five consecutive wins, including last Sunday's stomping of the Celtics and a 133-103 rout of the Bullets Friday night. "The Bucks seem to play well against the good teams," noted Quinn Buckner, who spent six years in Milwaukee. "When somebody gets hurt, they rally the wagons and pull together."

The Bucks are still playing without Tiny Archibald, but they have been getting a lot of bench production from Kevin Grevey . . . The Celtics are 31-9, and today marks the midpoint of their 1983-84 regular season. They were 31-10 after 41 games last season

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