Paul Pierce Bobblehead Night
March 21, 2002
Paul Pierce's biggest fan came all the way from Inglewood, Calif., to get a bobblehead doll of her favorite player. She saw the dolls advertised on a recent Celtics television broadcast and knew she had to have one. Hey, what are mothers for? Pierce promised the bobblehead he played around with in the locker room was going to his mother, Lorraine Hosey.
"This one's for you, mom," said Pierce, as he mugged for television cameras with the souvenir collectible. Just one problem, Hosey might not be able to recognize the supposed likeness of her son if not for the uniform name and number.
"We have a debate about that [whether it looks like me]," said Pierce. "I think it looks a little bit more like Roshown McLeod. I don't know. I like it."
Those fans who braved the weather and were among the first 5,000 in the building got their coveted bobblehad dolls. It's doubtful, however, that they had as much fun playing with the figurine as Pierce did.
Pierce used the doll to jokingly answer questions from reporters. Then, when former Celtic Bryant Stith came in to say a quick, "Hello," Pierce asked his doll, "Can B. Stith guard Paul Pierce?" The Celtics swingman pulled the doll's head to the right so it snapped back and motioned "No."
When Antoine Walker was asked if there was any pressure playing on bobblehead doll night, he said, "Nah." And after learning the team was not charging fans for the dolls, Walker added, "That's good. They need to give them away." Putting in his time
Some may call Pierce's shot right before the halftime buzzer from beyond halfcourt a stroke of luck. Pierce prefers to think of it as a case where practice makes perfect.
"Before practice, I just loft [shots like that] up about 10 to 15 times," said Pierce. "Coach [Jim] O'Brien tells me, 'Why do you shoot that?' And I said [after making one tonight], 'There you go.'
Pierce estimated that none of the long-range shots he takes before workouts have fallen this season.
O'Brien had this to say about the basket: "It was a lucky, lucky shot, although he practices them a lot, much to my dismay." Seconds opinion
Nothing reveals the truth like slow motion. O'Brien watched a replay of Lamond Murray's winning 3-pointer from Cleveland's game against New Jersey Tuesday night. While the Cavaliers' win helped the Celtics in the standings, O'Brien believes Murray did not get the shot off in time. He had 0.5 seconds to catch and shoot the ball, and O'Brien said it was not near enough time.
"I think it's impossible to catch the ball that way, turn, and release it in 0.5 seconds," said O'Brien. "I know for a fact watching it in slow motion that the clock was still at 0.5 from the time he caught the ball till it was up here [ready for release]. It's boom, boom. I don't think it's necessarily on purpose or whatever, but that's the fact. You asked me, did I think it was good? I thought it was not good. Nor could Kobe Bryant's shot [against the Celtics Feb. 19 with 1.2 seconds left] be good with a ball fake in a certain amount of time."
Considering the controversy, it was a smart move for the NBA's competition committee to decide neutral timekeepers will be used during the playoffs this year. The decision was made when the committee met at the All-Star break in February, though details of how time keepers will be assigned have yet to be determined. Legendary figure
Bobblehead dolls aside, the Celtics-Cavaliers matchup may not have had the appeal of other recent games at the Fleet. But that didn't stop Bill Russell from showing up . . . O'Brien on the Cavaliers: "There not, in a sense, dissimilar to Miami. They got off to a bad start. But you look at what they've done over the last 20 or so games and they're playing very good basketball. They'd be right in the playoff hunt, if they didn't get off to a bad start with [Zydrunas] Ilgauskas being banged up. They showed what they're all about [Tuesday night in beating the Nets]. They're playing very, very good basketball and there's nothing flukish about it." . . . Sign of the night: "Hey Jimmy, where's Kedrick?" . . . Second place: An erasable board that a fan used to post the dunks he desired Brown to execute when the rookie played four minutes of garbage time.
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