Saturday, January 29, 2011

T-Minus 27.5 hours until Celtics-Lakers

Ian Thomsen over at Sports Illustrated breaks down tomorrows looming battle between Boston and LA. For the regular season, it's a big game. These two teams haven't met since Boston lost to LA in LA during Game 7 of the Finals last year. Kendrick Perkins was not on the floor. KG was a shell of who he is this year. Shaq was in Cleveland. Thomsen also points out that LA has seemingly put forth minimal effort this year- they've gone 0-3 against the leagues elite: the Spurs, Mavs and Heat (who could forget that Christmas day beat down?), but still have the third best record in the NBA. He also points out that Boston has remained a powerhouse even with all of the injuries to the roster. 
In measuring the importance of tomorrows game, let's take a look at the regular season series outcomes between Boston and LA during Championship years. Thomsen provides this graphic: 

2009-10: Split regular-season series, L.A. won Finals 4-3
2007-08: Boston swept 2-0, Boston won Finals 4-2
1986-87: L.A. swept 2-0, L.A. won Finals 4-2
1984-85: Split series, L.A. won Finals 4-2
1983-84: L.A. swept 2-0, Boston won Finals 4-3

It's important to keep in mind that the outcome of the regular season series between two teams is not an indicator for would come out victorious if the same two teams were matched up in the finals. The Celtics and Lakers squads that we'll see facing off tomorrow will not be the same ones we'd see in June, if they were to meet in the Finals again.  

A video juxtaposition of what it looks like when someone on the Celtics hits someone on the opposing team in the balls on purpose, as opposed to unintentionally.

On purpose:


Okay, Mr. Frye? The distinction is clear. Nobody believes you! If he really got hit in the balls so hard he needed to fall on to the ground in pain, he wouldn't have hopped back up 1 second later. You can't fool me! One more video, just for Channing:
U maaaaad.

Laura Govan continues to act surprised that Gilbert Arenas is a loser... Even though he kicked her out of his house "every other weekend." FOR NINE YEARS!!

She also reveals that Arenas spends around 6,500 dollars a month to take care of his pet sharks. I mean come on... Is that really so unreasonable? I do that too. Am I supposed to be embarrassed or something?

The notes -- which appear to be her version of their life together -- reveal lots of details about their relationship. Arenas, 29, and Govan, 31, first met in 2002, when she was coaching basketball at a Golden State Warriors camp. In addition to their three young children (the fourth is due in June), they went through other pregnancies that ended in miscarriages. Along the way, there were lots of break-ups and make-ups.
Some of the meeting notes confirm what Arenas himself shared on his popular, now-defunct blog: "I've done kicked her out of my house almost every weekend, yet she's still here and she still believes in me," he wrote in 2008 in a post describing his marriage proposal to her. The notes tell an almost identical story: "The reason he proposed to her is that he put her out of the house every other weekend since they met and she stays with him, so something must be working."
There's a lot about how Arenas spent his money, based on her understanding of the household finances: "he states he makes 1.5 million per month," read the notes. Arenas lavished plenty on their Great Falls home, dropping $100,000 on landscaping, $5,000 a month for housekeepers, $675 "per car" washing, and $1 million for his backyard pool and grotto. His sharks are expensive: $5,000 a month to feed them and $1,500 for a keeper to drive from Columbus to take care of them. And yet they never had a nanny, Govan complains, according to the notes: "he would state 'you had them you watch them.' "
More after the jump

Recap: Oops. I'm glad that's over.

Be afraid, Steve Javie. (Picture jacked from Chris Forsberg's twitter page)

The Celtics spent the entire first half standing around doing two things: 1) Watching the Suns do pretty much whatever they wanted offensively and 2) Looking at the refs, waiting to be bailed out. Granted, there were some calls/no-calls that I found questionable... But they do not account for the butt kicking the Suns put on the Celtics in the first half.

The first quarter started with two quick Celtic turnovers. Shaq picked up two personal fouls in the first minute and a half of the game, so Perk came off the bench really early. Perk picked up two quick personal fouls of his own, and they both came before the 6 minute mark... The highlight of the beginning of the first quarter? A great quote by Bill Walton. Channing Frye was all over Perk at the free throw line, provoking Bill to say, "Channing Frye a grabbing, hacking foul on Kendrick Perkins at the free throw line? What's he thinking? If he was thinking at all. That's where you want him to catch the ball." Hilarious. Gortat drained a three as the first quarter ended and put the Suns up 14.

Nate was on the floor at the beginning of the second quarter, and forced a turnover, subsequently connecting at the rim on the other end. That was a good sign... Too bad nothing good came after that. The Celtics continued to stand around and watch the Suns play like they wanted to win. Von Wafer came in. He was supposed to provide a spark, and I guess he did as good a job as that as you can with minimal support from your teammates. He forced a steal, made the outlet pass to Paul, and Paul couldn't connect on the lay-up on the other end. Then Glen Davis fell down on defense, and Mickael Pietrus got an easy lay-up, putting the Suns up 15. Midway through the second quarter, Paul was shooting 1-7, Ray 1-4, Davis 1-5 and Rondo 0-1.... 10-31 as a team. Eek!! Doc Rivers got ejected during a timeout midway through the 2nd. He is an OG and I love him. He high fived Celtics fans in the stands on his way out. With 4:33 left in the 2nd, the Celtics were down 17. They went in to the half 14, with nobody in double figures.

The Celtics showed some fight at the beginning of the third quarter. KG connected on a couple of short jumpers and made it a 10 point game. The Suns called timeout and Bill Walton proclaimed that the Celtics were back in the game, "They're right there. They're right there. It doesn't matter where you are, if you're playing Phoenix, and you're down 10... You're right there." Too bad Phoenix went right back up 15 coming out of the timeout. Paul Pierce down the lane to his left and couldn't get the roll. Paul went down the lane again on the next possession, connected, but was unable to complete the three point play. Paul trooped back on defense, stripped Dudley and made the outlet pass to Ray. Ray put up a three and missed. Pretty much the story of the whole game. The Celtics weren't able to get the lead back to 10, let alone single digits, and the Suns went up 16. Then Pietrus caught on fire. I was just kind of shaking my head at this point. I mean what else is there to do? Many consider the Celtics a team that's built to win a championship. Few, if any, consider them built for back to backs. They didn't get in to Phoenix until 4:00. This is what happens. Is that an excuse? I don't know. I'm not going to use another Bill Walton quote here (but I will in a second), but he said it best when he said that back to back games on the road need to be won early. The Celtics dug themselves in to a hole early, and spent the whole game trying to figure out a way to claw back. Not a good look. Now on to the next fabulous Bill Walton quote. Perk came out with 6.7 left in the third and Bill said, "Perk looks tired, look at him slouching. Stand tall, be proud, you're a great champion." If I had the discipline to have a mantra for myself, like one I could say to myself every morning in the mirror while I got ready, that'd be a great one. And Bill is great for saying it like he meant it from the bottom of his hippy heart.

The Celtics made a run in the 4th, and then Steve Javie tossed KG from the game with 4:07 left and the Celtics down 11. Nate got one, too. Oops. After that, everyone just wanted the game to be over... And to be honest, it was already way past my bedtime anyway, so I was glad to call it a night as well. Baby did not play in the second half, after straining his right hamstring. *crossing fingers that he's okay*

P.S. I still think Paul Pierce should not have played in this game. Not that it matters now.
P.P.S. The Lakers just lost to the Kings. Not that anybody's thinking about Sunday.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Paul Pierce is the most stubborn man in the entire history of the world.

First of all, Greg is looking a little bemused in that profile picture. Shout out to him for being the most loyal sideline reporter in the game, but I had to say it.

And now, back on track. In his short time here, Shaq has already proven to me to be a man of sound judgement. He plays through pain and injury when it's reasonable, and at other times, opts to sit out for maintenance.

Paul Pierce on the other hand, does not do that. The irony in him gaining the false reputation of faking injury and being over dramatic is just too much... The truth is that if this man had two broken legs, he would find a way to walk and you'd have to fight him to keep him off the floor. Admirable, yes. But the man drives me crazy with this! Post game last night (after hobbling off the court) he said that his ankle had been bothering him since Tuesday against Cleveland AND that he bruised his thigh during the Portland game. He needs to sit out and let his body mend a little bit. I'm a DOCTOR. Not.

Girls talk sports: looking ahead to Celtics-Suns.

Here's the deal: The Suns are a totally beatable team. Duh... Because the Celtics can beat anyone, right? But on the back end of 2 games in 2 nights, a match up with the run and gun, high-scoring Suns could potentially be problematic. In order to win this game the Celtics must:

Control the pace: After last nights battle with Portland, and then having to get on a plane to go play in Phoenix the next night... The Celtics will not fare well if they play at the Suns' preferred pace. Instead, the Celtics need to establish the tempo, and stick to their guns all night.
REBOUND THE BALL: The Celtics were lucky to beat the Blazers, the way they were out-hustled and abused on the offensive glass. Phoenix is struggling right now, but they still have weapons a-plenty. They will capitalize where Portland did not, and that won't do. By the way, the Celtics rank dead last in the league in rebounds per game. Who's second to last? Phoenix.  
Attack Nash defensively: Poor Steve.... More on him later*. Anyways, Mr. Nash has never been known for his defense.  As he gets older, this becomes more and more true. I don't know how much gas Rondo has left in the paint for tonight, but whatever he's got, he needs to take it and bring it right at Nash.
Play defense: Isn't this bullet a shining example of my grasp on the game? I'm so good at doing analysis. But yes. The Celtics need to play defense. The Suns can put up a heap of points in a hurry, and they can do it from all over the floor. Lucky for the Celtics, when they pay attention, they're better equipped than any other team in the NBA to defend against all kinds of offense- particularly in the interior and beyond the arc, where the Suns like to cash in. For the Celtics, it just depends on how much gas is left in the tank. There are lots of people on Phoenix who could light up the scoreboard, but in singling out one person the Celtics should really seek to contain, I'm going to say Channing Frye. It's going to be a long night if he gets it going, especially from downtown... So the Celtics need to stay home on him. Also, Jared Dudley, because I gotta give it up for BC alum AND because he's often overlooked when people talk about this Phoenix team.

*A note on Steve Nash: he is undoubtedly one of the best point guards of my time, but the situation in Phoenix is quite simply no longer optimal for him... Or them. Phoenix was battling LA for the top spot in the Western Conference last year- this year? If the playoffs started today, they wouldn't make the cut. Amare Stoudemire jumped ship for the Knicks this summer, and more recently, the Suns shipped Turkoglu back to Orlando, giving them some more wiggle room. Many speculate that Nash will be the next piece to go, but Suns personnel insist that this is not true. The Suns need to rebuild- they can't honestly think that Josh Childress and Hakim Warrick (and I do love my Syracuse alum) combine to make an adequate replacement for Stoudemire.

It's a conspiracy: The NBA banned Dwyane Wade's migraine goggles, Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz wore sparkly shoes and blinded D. Wade and Lebron... Heat lose.

Oh I'm on to them alright. D. Wade must be mad about this.

Nicely done, Alicia and Swizzy. Anyway, in all seriousness, the new couple looked cute and cuddly court side... And their shoes might or might not have blinded D. Wade and Lebron. I'm pretty sure Amare's goggles blocked at least some of the reflection out. (Amare's standard goggles, incase you're unfamiliar) 

More celebs court side after the jump.

Recap: Bill Walton is an amazing orator and the Celtics squeeze out an ugly one against the Blazers.

Bill Walton gushes over Shaq (during his Phoenix days. So. Funny. And much more deserving of the top spot of this post than any highlight from last night)

This was not a pretty win, to say the least. This was a back and forth game until the end of the third, when the Celtics went on a 12-2 run, which spilled over in to the beginning of the fourth frame. In the fourth, Rondo set the pace, Ray Allen hit back to back three pointers and Von Wafer came off the bench with some energy and spark. The Celtics went up 10 with 9 minutes remaining. Portland clawed back in to it, but the game was never really in danger.

The Celtics won this game because they're better than Portland, and that's about it. Boston had 21 turnovers, leading to 22 points, and allowed Portland to grab 18 offensive rebounds, leading to 15 points (that's 37 total points because the Celtics were playing scrubby). Fortunately for the Celtics, the Blazers just weren't able to take advantage of that, and ended up scoring just 41 points outside of the 37 aforementioned points they made of Boston mess-ups. The Blazers shot 36 percent from the field for the game. Eek. Boston was able to win by simply outperforming that miserable stat: the Celtics took 26 less shots, but were 46 percent from the field for the game. They also attempted 33 free throws, to Portlands 13... But I gotta add that the Blazers committed what were in my mind, a couple of over the top and unnecessarily rough fouls. Rondo spent half the game on the deck, and Ray Allen took a couple of hard hits, as well.

Injury updates after the jump

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Jimmer Fredette: Danny Ainge's dream man.

Prolific scorer? Mormon? Enough said. Get him in Green. The only glitch in this plan is that the Celtics are projected to pick 29th or 30th in this years draft. Will Fredette still be around for choosing?
Some statistical highlights this year: 
Will he surpass Danny Ainge as BYU's best player of all time?

Girls talk sports: looking ahead to Celtics-Blazers.

The Celtics, coming off a nice comfy home stand, have lost 4 of their last 6 on the road. The good news is, they're playing in Portland tonight, where they've won 7 of their last 10 visits. We all know the Celtics have been plagued by injuries, but no team has been more battered than the Blazers. All Star point guard Brandon Roy and veteran center Marcus Camby are both sidelined indefinitely with knee injuries. Nobody even mentions Greg Oden anymore. LaMarcus Aldridge (Western Conference Player of the Week) has stepped up big time for the Blazers, but has been bothered by an injury to his right hip. MRI results came back negative, but he managed only 9 points in a Portland loss to Sacramento on Monday.

Even with all of these injuries, the Blazers were riding a 5 game win streak before losing to Sacramento. Aldridge, as was aforementioned, has been playing quality basketball. He scored 37 points and pulled down 12 rebounds against Minnesota on January 17th, and followed that performance up with several more high scoring outings, with 23, 28 and 25 points. The Blazers have had several other people step up for them, as well.

Wesley Matthews has done an admirable job filling in for the injured Roy, averaging 22 points per game. He had a 28 point night against the Clippers during the Blazers win streak, and shot 40 percent from beyond the arc. When Andre Miller came to the Blazers, he was supposed to be the piece that brought them to the next level. That hasn't happened, but he has been playing solid basketball. He leads the team in assists, with 7 a game, and also leads the team in steals, with 72. After expressing his discontent in Portland all summer long, Rudy Fernandez has stepped his game up. With the Portland back court injury rattled, Fernandez has averaged 30 minutes a game, along with 8 points and 2 assists. Some other names that you might not be familiar with but should be on the look out for tonight are Nicolas Batum (can get it going from 3 point land) and Dante Cunningham (thrust in to more minutes and a starting role, due to all of the injuries).

What do the Celtics need to do to win this game?

Come out strong: Portland has been prone to slow starts as of late. They have trailed after the 1st quarter in 5 of their 6 last games, and opponents have averaged 27 points while shooting 52 percent from the field. The Celtics need to capitalize on this, and come out aggressive.
Attack the paint: The Blazers lost their premier shot blocker when Marcus Camby got injured, leaving LaMarcus Aldridge as the lone threat. The Celtics need to take advantage of their size and aggressively attack the paint.
Stay home on defensive rebounds: Portland ranks third in the league in offensive rebounding. Let's cross our fingers that the Celtics remain alert on the boards all night and make sure to keep a body on Aldridge and Batum.

Marquis Daniels will probably play tonight, having traveled to Portland to meet the team. Shaq is a maybe. Lastly, I'll be keeping an eye on Perk, to see how he plays in his second return to game action. Go big man!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Hell hath no fury like a baby mama woman scorned. Did Laura Govan rob Gilbert Arenas?

Oh boy. So first Gilbert Arenas leaves town on a pregnant Laura Govan, and now she (allegedly) robs his Virginia home!

Now comes word from a source very close to Lauren, that she’s gone and done the unthinkable…She’s robbed his Great Falls, Virginia home, taking clothes, shoes, furniture, and even Gilbert’s fish tank and sharks. Laura has repeatedly asked Gilbert for money several times over the last month unsuccessfully. Laura has also been threatening to go to press over drug allegations involving Arenas dealing marijuana…Gilbert has yet to press charges and is trying to keep a lid on it..I doubt this will end amicably for either party.(source)

More after the jump.

My sister and Kendrick Perkins: birds of a feather.

Perk's standing ovation

At one time or another, every person in my immediate family has been a teacher. I live with my sister, and she teaches 6th grade. She's up and out of the door every day by 6:30 AM. Her job doesn't end at 3:00, when the bell rings. To be honest, for a good teacher, the work never ends. My sister is constantly on the job, whether she's talking to parents on the phone, or carefully preparing lesson plans that will both interest and challenge her students, or bringing her students to cultural and recreational events in her free time, to help expose them to things that they would otherwise miss out on. It's a grind. She's been a teacher for 8 years, and she still strives to be better, still works to connect with each and every one of her students. She's kept in touch with students from her first year of teaching, and receives requests from students she hasn't taught for years to write college recommendation letters. I've seen first hand how challenging- and rewarding- the job is, and I don't think teachers get enough recognition for all that they do and for the sacrifices that they make. I can't tell you how many people I've heard claim that teachers have it easy, because they get vacations off and all they have to do is hang out with kids.

Those are probably the same people who say that Kendrick Perkins sucks... And I can't tell you how many times I've heard that. Maybe that has to do with the fact that I used to live in New York, but still. I've heard it said many times that Perk is a trash basketball player. Bob Ryan wrote quite eloquently on the big man in this mornings Globe:

"From the time he arrived here more than seven years ago as an unpolished gem of a prospect out of Clifton J. Ozen High School in Beaumont, Texas, Perkins has never been afraid of work. He has gone from a kid Rivers had no intention of playing to a member of a starting five that can claim never to have lost a playoff series when fully intact. He doesn’t have the name or the finesse of Garnett, Pierce, Allen, or Rondo, but he provides the gristle without which the Celtics cannot fully function.
'We have kind of been, I don’t know what words to use, but less than ourselves over the three or four months that we have been together, just waiting,' said Allen. 'We have had great success with the guys we’ve been using, but we haven’t had the lineup that has been consistent in the past 3 1/2 years where we have won some big games, including a championship. It was great to see him back on the floor.'
Kendrick Perkins wasn’t supposed to be back until after the All-Star Game, remember? That’s all he had to hear." 

I don't think you can fully grasp just how good Kendrick Perkins is, and how important he is to this team, without consistently watching the Celtics. Sure, the casual viewer can claim that the Celtics may have won Game 7 of the Finals if Perk had been on the floor... but you won't understand unless you've seen how this team plays with him on the floor, and how they play without him. It's not that they're not good without him, because they obviously are. Perk is not a guy that's going to awe you with flashy play, and he won't floor you with his athleticism. You might not be able to point at one thing he did during the game and pinpoint it as a game changer... But that's because it's everything that he does. He leaves it all on the floor, night in and night out. He scares the other team out of the paint, battles under the basket for boards that other players miss out on because they don't want to take the beating it takes to get them (shout out to Luke Harangody for following in Perk's footsteps in this venture), and doesn't worry about scoring. He scores when he can, when he's open, or he'll muscle one up under the basket. He allows the Celtics to go with single coverage on guys that most other teams have to double up on, a la Dwight Howard. And he does it all with one facial expression. 

My sister gets to school at least an hour early everyday to make sure that her classroom is 100 percent ready for her students. She often can't sleep at night, because her brain refuses to stop working, won't give her a break from thinking about how to become better and how to best reach her students. Perk was on a similar grind, clocking some serious time in the gym, allowing him to make this early comeback. The night before his return, he was in the gym until 1 AM, and couldn't sleep when he got home, he was so caught up in the anticipation of making his return. So maybe it's corny, but Perk, for doing all of the garbage work that nobody celebrates and for being involved in every aspect of the game and refusing to ever give up, is like a good teacher.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Recap: Blowout successful. C's head out to the West Coast with a win, Cavs lose 18 in a row.

Picture jacked from ESPN Boston.

Even if the Celtics didn't keep their foot on the pedal (or stay in "attack mode" as is Tommy's favorite thing to say these days) for the complete 48 minutes, they still managed to win by 17... And the game was never really a close one.

I'm not going to do any in-depth analysis of the game right now, because it was a blowout and I want to watch the State of the Union. Here are some important snippets: Paul Pierce scored 17 points in the 1st quarter, setting the tone. Kendrick Perkins didn't start, but he made his return in the 1st frame, and was welcomed by the crowd with a really nice standing ovation. He looked strong and confident. The scowl was back in full force! Heck yeah! He made the first shot he took, and ended up playing 17 minutes, with 7 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists. Go Perk! 7 Celtics scored in the double figures. Rondo played 43 minutes. Boooo, too much! Ray Allen and Nate Robinson split their time accompanying Rondo in the back court. Nate looked to be in a much better flow playing at the 2 guard (he will probably be one of the main beneficiaries of Delonte's return. Delonte can run the 1 and he can slide over to the 2. And Rondo can catch his breath). Ray hit 2 three pointers, bringing him closer to beating Reggie Miller's record. Paul Pierce headed to the locker room early, but that was apprently just to beat traffic, and not because of any injury.

More loveliness from Perk C/O the Celtics twitter page:

That's it for now! It's State of the Union time. Good night, love bugs!

O...M....G. (Cue the funeral music: It's good to wake up, look in the mirror and the only competition's you." FAB)

The guru himself Chris Forsberg also added this in at the end of his piece on Perk's return: "A scouting report sitting near Perkins' chair in the locker room before Tuesday's game said, 'He's back. Good luck.'"

That is all. 

And because I Love Fabolous, Funeral/R.I.P. to the competition music to commemorate this SPLENDID occasion after the jump. If you ever wanna get hype, you must listen. He is... The best. 

Ciara already linked to another NBA baller. *Phew* So apparently there was no truth to the Lebron story!

Could there be truth to this one? She HAS been spotted courtside at several of his games, both on the road and at home...

Images C/O The YBF.
So who IS this esteemed baller?
Find out after the jump.

Girls talk sports: looking ahead to Celtics-Cavs.

Man. It's crazy how fast things can change.

Last year, Cleveland finished with the best record in the NBA and was considered a contender. Now? They're owners of the worst record in the NBA and they can't catch a break. First Lebron took his talents to South Beach. Then Mo Williams found himself sidelined indefinitely with a groin injury. And now, they'll have to go without Anderson Varejao for the rest of the season, after he tore a tendon in his right foot (and it happened during practice!! Doesn't that make it so much more depressing?). And just to make things worse, sharpshooter Anthony Parker has been sidelined with a lower back strain, so he probably won't go tonight.

The Cavs projected starting five is Antawn Jamison, Christian Eyenga, JJ Hickson, Daniel Gibson and Ramon Sessions. Sessions is questionable, with a strained abdominal muscle.

As is usual with Shaq sidelined, the Celtics projected starting five will be Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Semih Erden. The Celtics will also be playing shorthanded (no Kendrick Perkins, Delonte West, Jermaine O'Neal, or Shaq. Marquis Daniels is questionable).

Cleveland is on a 17 game losing streak, having not won a game since November.  So how do the Celtics keep the Cavs skid going?

Well. They don't score too much- they average around 93 points a game. Their main offensive threats are Jamison and Hickson. KG has always matched up well with Jamison, but Hickson is a little bit trickier. He's only averaging 11 points and 6 rebounds, but he's very capable of having a big game. He has started at center the past four games and has averaged 18 points and 13 rebounds. At 6'9" and 240, he's a pretty big body, but he's also surprisingly agile and can play away from the basket. The Celtics will want to keep Hickson out of the paint and force him to shoot jump shots. Glen Davis may be the best match up against him. With a thin front court, it's also a possibility that Luke Harangody could see some time guarding him.

More after the jump

Monday, January 24, 2011

Celtics hanging strong at #2 in Marc Stein's weekly power rankings

(click image to enlarge)

Was there a rumor on the streets of the Celtics bringing 'Sheed back to entice the Pistons in to arranging a buy-out for Richard Hamilton for a swap? I somehow heard nothing about this, but Marc Stein says these rumors were around, so it must be true. In any case, I'd gladly sign up for that if it were at all a remote possibility.

Updates from Celtics practice

I hope you like Semih Erden and Von Wafer

Shaq is likely to miss the next two games (Portland and Phoenix). Doc had this to say regarding Shaq's grumpy hip: "It's his hip. It's locked. I don't know what the hell that means. I don't know if there's  a key you go get or something." Chris Forsberg is a genius and he hypothesizes that the Big Shamrock will join the team in Phoenix, and make the trip to LA for the big showdown on January 30.

Marquis might not play against Cleveland tomorrow. He's not hurt, but he has a family issue, so he may not be available to go. With no Shaq/JO and no Marquis, Semih will probably get the start and Von will make his way off the bench sooner than usual.

Good news about Perk and Delonte after the jump

Kim Kardashian continues to infiltrate the NBA, the 3rd edition.

We've already seen Kim at 2 Nets games (see here and here), but I have to say... Her latest choice of court side company is THE BEST YET. Hands down. Find out who it was after the jump.

A look at the upcoming schedule: It's a doozy!

Of the fourteen games pictured above, 8 (but 9, because the Celtics play the Lakers twice) of those teams are playing above .500 basketball. As was aforementioned, the Green will be matched up against the Lakers twice in the span of two weeks. This span of games is also special because by the end, Kendrick Perkins and Delonte West should be back and the Celtics should be pinning down their rotations and poising themselves to make a strong run for 18. Yipee!

February is pretty much tough start to finish. You could point at the match ups with Sacramento, Charlotte, New Jersey and Golden State (I'm not including the LA Clippers in the gimmies, because in case you haven't heard... Blake Griffin should be in the running for MVP. Not rookie of the year. He's a proooooblem, man) and say that those are easy Celtics wins. Well- seeing as the Green just lost an easy win against Washington- who are we to say that any game is an easy win? Plus, Paul Pierce doesn't recommend that you do that:

“We know we can’t play like this going out west.”
“Like this” is an 85-83 loss to the wobbly Wizards. “Like this” is scoring 35 points in the first quarter and just 27 in the entire second half (11 in the last period).
Goliath slapped David around for a while, then sat back with a bag of chips and essentially “watched” the second half.
Looking back to that exercise and the coming of the Cavaliers, Pierce — a man of much confidence — expressed a healthy concern.
“These are the games I’m more scared of truthfully,” he said. “When we play the contending teams and the teams who are playoff-bound, you know, I know we’re going to be mentally ready from top to bottom.
“It’s these games right here that I worry about.”

Word, Paul! I completely agree with you. Plus, chew on this before you file anything away under "easy win":

-The game against Sacramento comes one day after playing against the Lakers in LA. We all know that the Celtics tend to take a little time to recover after big, emotional match ups. Plus, Tyreke Evans didn't play in the last game. He dropped 35 against Golden State last night.

-The C's definitely seem to have Charlotte's number, but this game could still pose problems. For one thing, it's sandwiched between show downs with Dallas (the Celtics should be looking to avenge their earlier season loss against the Mavs) and Orlando (hopefully they don't get caught looking ahead). Charlotte is a team that's improving and they have two of my non-Celtics faves in G. Wallace and S. Jackson.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Celtics Girlfriends & Wives party for the launch of Shannon Allen's TV show.

L to R: Rajon Rondo's girlfriend Ashley Bachelor, KG's wife Brandi Garnett, Ray Allen's wife Shannon Allen, Paul Pierce's wife Julie Pierce. 

This post has been updated WITH **VIDEO** and you can view it by clicking HERE!

Don't worry. It's not a trashy Boston version of Basketball Wives. Shannon Allen, along with Flo Allen (Ray's mom) will host a cooking show on NECN entitled "The Pre-Game Meal." Shannon and Flo will play host on every episode to a different Boston area athlete or noted chef (David Ortiz will co-host an episode), and a nutritious "pre-game" meal will be prepared. Yum. Speaking of Big Papi... I wonder how nutritional his preferred pre-game meal of choice is. I guess I'll have to tune in to find out. 

Other Boston faves in attendance were Wes Welker and his girlfriend and Perk and his wife Vanity.

Shannon Brown (Lakers) and Monica (one of my fave R&B ladies of all time) got eloped.

I admittedly first heard about this a couple of days ago, but for a couple of reasons, I just didn't post about it:

A) Because he's on the Lakers... So who cares?

B) Because there were no pictures. I'm like a kid in that way. Visual aides, please.

Now that a picture has re-surfaced, this story has become semi-interesting.
Here they are! Monica looks super pretty in her Donna Karan dress, and I'm obsessed with her necklace. She looks very Grecian Goddess. Shannon Brown looks like.... Shannon Brown. 

Teehehee. Psych. 

He looks handsome, although I do wish he could have thrown a tux on for the occasion. 

I kind of dig the fact that they got married discreetly, instead of turning it in to some big media story. Congrats to them!  


On a random note, Monica sings one of my favorite songs of all time:
Sigh. So good.

Two good Celtics tidbits after a crappy loss

1) Delonte West travelled with the team and has had the cast on his right wrist removed. You'll recall that he's a left handed shooter, so this injury wasn't going to really affect his shooting ability, but he has now been cleared to catch and dribble with his right hand. He's projected to come back sometime after all star break. He traveled with the team to Washington, another indicator of just how good he's feeling and how close he is to returning to action.

2) Perk maintains that he's going to make his return on February 4th, in Boston, against Dallas. Yay!! My friends at (Okay, so I don't actually know these people. But I love their blog!) posted this video originally from CSNNE of Perk blazing the comeback trail. What a site for sore eyes :)

Kenny Anderson stomps all over my childhood dreams.

Remember these days?
Flashback to the 1997-98 NBA season: I was in 6th grade and OBSESSED with the lowly Celtics (they finished 26-36 that year). I didn't even fully grasp just how bad they were at that age. I obviously noticed that they lost a lot, often by blowout- but I had the idyllic mind of a youth, and I truly believed that they would come back the next game and be better, because I thought they had all of this great talent. These were the Rick Pitino days, so the roster was stock fall of Kentucky guys: Antoine Walker, Ron Mercer and Walter McCarty. These were also the days that Chauncey Billups and Bruce Bowen wore Green... And of course Kenny Anderson, too. I LOVED me some Kenny. He was my guy (though to be fair, the only person I didn't like on that team was Pervis Ellison... And there were some real winners on that roster: Greg Minor, Zan Tabak, Roy Rogers... Oy), he was the veteran point guard in town at a time when Chauncey Billups was a baby faced rookie fresh out of Colorado, so he seemed to me to be the more reliable player to have at the 1. Plus, every single time he was interviewed, he used the word "loquacious." So how could you not love him?

Anyway, Mr. Anderson is now retired and his post basketball financial woes have been well documented. But now, thanks to the American epidemic that is reality television, the fact that he's a huge cheater and a negligent father have been well documented as well. Wamp!!!

Lucky for me, it was my sisters birthday today and I didn't watch the Celtics lose to the Wizards tonight because we were out at dinner.

That being said, I have no game recap. As is evident by the 85-83 score, with the Celtics on the losing side, I didn't miss anything. 

I was keeping track of the score on my phone all through dinner, and with 5 minutes left in the 4th I made my way over to the restaurant bar, to see if the boys in Green could pull out a victory. Wamp! They couldn't. 

Three things I noticed during the 5 minutes I watched: 

1) Nobody in Green could make a shot. 

2) Paul Pierce was fouled, and the ref didn't call it. What a surprise!! 

3) Rondo stripped the ball away from John Wall as the 4th quarter was winding down, and gave the Celtics a chance to win at the buzzer.... But referring back to point number one: Nobody could make a shot. 

Shout out to the fellow Celtics fan I met at the bar, who also left his party to watch the final 5 minutes and who shared in my outrage at the no-call on Paul Pierce. The volume wasn't turned on, but I'm sure Tommy was fuming. 

If you're looking for a more detailed recap of this crappy loss, check this out.

One good thing: Doc Rivers thinks no news is good news. Having heard nothing from Celtics medical staff concerning Shaq's sore right hip, the Coach assumes that the injury isn't too serious and indicated that he would learn more at practice on Monday (source)

The end.