First-year Celtics share Boston driving experiences

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First-year Celtics share Boston driving experiences

Driving in Boston can be challenging for newcomers to the area. Between one-way streets, ongoing road work, and unpredictable traffic jams, there is a learning curve when navigating around Beantown.   
First-year Celtics shared their driving experiences getting to the TD Garden, including the effects of extreme congestion prior to last Friday's home opener and early November snow on Wednesday.    
Darko Milicic  
"(Last Friday) it took me two hours to get here from where I come from. There was traffic. I don't know where these people are going. New York is ten times bigger than Boston. It's worse here and this city is ten times smaller than New York. I don't understand where these people are coming from. It's wasted time. I hate traffic. I left an hour-and-a-half early and I thought I'd be here in a half (hour). It sure wasn't enough because it took me two hours."

Courtney Lee  
"It snowed. I've seen it but I haven't driven in it in a while. It was crazy. Snowing already? ... Orlando and Houston (two of Lee's former NBA cities) don't compare to Boston. The only place that compares to navigating through Boston is New Jersey. It's kind of similar, especially with the New York side of it right there -- the traffic, one-way streets, the Mass Pike. I've gotten lost a couple times. It's a good thing Benz makes a great navigation system. It helps me out a lot."   

Fab Melo  
"Me and (former Celtics training camp invitee) Jamar (Smith) were trying to find our way to the Garden the first time we came. We could see the Garden by every angle, but we couldn't find the right exit. We didn't come. We had a duckboat tour and we couldn't find the way. We had a GPS. It didn't work, we didn't make it. Now I know my way to the Garden (laughs). It's good."   

Jared Sullinger  
"No, I haven't got lost. When you have an iPhone and you have all these good apps, it's only right that it helps you out. (Turns to lockermate Jeff Green, who got lost several times his first season in Boston, and smirks. "I didn't have an iPhone," Green retorted.) There's no similarities to driving in Ohio (Sullinger's home state). In Ohio, people can drive. In Boston, there's a lot of traffic so I feel like they can't drive but I've got to understand there's a lot of traffic so that naturally happens. It's really a slower pace here, due to traffic. I leave at 4 o'clock, 4:15 so I don't have to run into a 5 o'clock jam."   

Jason Collins  
"Last Friday, the traffic was so bad. I live maybe three miles from the Garden. It took me over 45 minutes to get here. I tried to take Storrow (Drive) because the navigation says it's the shortest way. At one point I really thought it would have been quicker to walk."

Kris Joseph  
"I've began to wonder who's worse, New York City drivers or these drivers. They don't let you know when you're trying to switch lanes or anything. They just do it. I'm cool getting places because I stay with the GPS. I don't care if it's the long way or the short way. It's going to get me there. To be honest, I've done more driving in the United States than I have in Canada, period (Joseph grew up in Montreal before attending Syracuse University). There's a lot of public transportation there. But a daily commute is cool because I stay ten minutes away from the practice facility so it's not too, too far. Here, you've just got to leave early to beat that traffic, so it's cool. I've been doing alright."  

WATCH: Celtics vs. Raptors

WATCH: Celtics vs. Raptors

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Celtics-Raptors preview: DeRozan, Lowry a challenge for Bradley, C's

Celtics-Raptors preview: DeRozan, Lowry a challenge for Bradley, C's

BOSTON – Avery Bradley doesn’t mind being a standout, but this is probably not what he had in mind. 

Injuries have ravaged the Boston Celtics’ starting five to the point where only one player, Bradley, has been with the first unit in all 22 games this season. 

Just like Bradley was looked upon to step his game up in the absence of Isaiah Thomas (right groin) at Orlando on Wednesday, he will once again be challenged to lead Boston (13-9) to victory tonight when the Thomas-less Celtics face the Toronto Raptors. 

Bradley’s emergence as a two-way talent this season has overshadowed at times what has been another season of elite play defensively. 

And he’ll need to be on top of his defensive game tonight against a Raptors All-Star backcourt of Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan. 

Both Lowry and DeRozan present a different kind of challenge for Bradley who will spend time defending each of them at various points during the game. 

Lowry has good size, strength and deceptive quickness in addition to an under-rated perimeter game that will keep Bradley on his toes for sure. 

This season he's averaging 20.8 points, 4.9 rebounds and a career-high 7.6 assists while shooting 42.9 percent on 3's which is also a career mark. 

And DeRozan is having the kind of season that might get him a few league MVP votes. 

His 28.0 points per game ranks fifth in the NBA, but making his numbers even more impressive is that unlike most guards DeRozan doesn’t generate much offense from three-pointers.

DeRozan averages 1.8 three-point attempts per game which is the fewest attempts among any player ranked among the league’s top-25 scorers.

The 6-foot-7 All-Star is the master of the mid-range game which accounts for 31.5 percent of the points he scores. And when he’s not shooting the mid-range, he’s working a defender in one-on-one iso-situations. 

That helps explain why 76.4 percent of his two-point made field goals are unassisted. 

But here’s the thing about Bradley. 

As much as we give him props for what he does defensively, it’s his offense that has put him on the map as a potential All-Star this season. 

Bradley is averaging a career-high 17.9 points while shooting 47.2 percent from the field. He’s also averaging a career-high 7.8 rebounds per game in addition to shooting a career-high 40.7 percent on 3's.

But for Bradley, individual accolades are only going to come his way by the Celtics winning games; preferably against above-average teams like the Toronto Raptors.

And that would make both Bradley and the Celtics stand out this season.