Garnett ejected for hit on Hansbrough


Garnett ejected for hit on Hansbrough

BOSTON Kevin Garnett spent the latter part of Friday's 94-75 win over Indiana as a spectator, but it wasn't quite how he would have envisioned it.

Instead of on the bench, Garnett was back inside the C's locker room after being ejected with 8:24 to play and the Celtics sitting on top of a commanding 78-55 lead.

The incident involved Pacers forward Tyler Hansbrough who was hit in the face by Garnett while pump-faking before going up for a shot attempt.

Officials reviewed the play afterward and called Garnett for a flagrant-two foul which is an automatic ejection.

"I've got nothing to say about it," said Hansbrough who led all scorers with 19 points off the bench. "It is what it is."

After the game, Garnett gave his version of what happened.

"I was firm," Garnett said. "I didn't mean to get him in the face like that. I was trying to swipe the ball. It was a physical game; that's what it was, part of the game."

As Boston's lead continued to swell, the level of physical play also increased.

Aware of this, Celtics coach Doc Rivers was about to take Garnett out of the game and replace him with Brandon Bass who at the time of the incident, was at the scorer's table.

Naturally, Rivers wasn't thrilled about seeing one of his players ejected.

But in hindsight, it might have been the best thing for all involved.

"Listen, there was so much crap going on at that point, I just think Cape (lead official Jim Capers) has been around the league a long time and I think he was thinking, 'I'm going to do Kevin a favor and get him out of here,'" Rivers said. "Because it was getting chippy."

Rivers added, "I really think sometimes that's what officials do, and you can't blame them for it."

Capers knows a thing or two about the Celtics being involved in chippy games.

He was the lead official during the incident between the Celtics and the Brooklyn Nets on Nov. 28 that led to Rajon Rondo being suspended for two games after he and Nets big man Kris Humphries got into it.

The Celtics got the win and Garnett got a chance to get some added rest even if it'll cost him 2,000 (the cost of being ejected).

Bruins need Hayes to "take his game to another level"


Bruins need Hayes to "take his game to another level"

BUFFALO -- With it appearing that Loui Eriksson is all but gone from the Bruins with the July 1 opening of free agency around the corner, B’s general manager Don Sweeney must find a way to replace the second-leading point man from last year’s hockey club. With or without a suitable Eriksson replacement at right wing via trade or free agency, the Bruins will also need greater production from their returning wingers on the right side.

That means 20-year-old David Pastrnak needs to have a breakthrough season after the Bruins knocked away attempts to extract him in trade discussions for a top-4 defenseman, and Jimmy Hayes needs to rebound from a streaky, disappointing first season in Boston. The 6-foot-6 Hayes slumped to 13 goals and 29 points in 75 games, and was a team-worst minus-12 while going through long stretches where it was hard to even notice him on the ice.

His GM said that needs to change next season with the Bruins counting on him to play more consistently, and be willing to play the big man’s game.

“We have internal candidates that might have to step up, and David is a player like that…Jimmy is a player like that. There’s no question we’re not a complete team right now,” said Sweeney. “So we’ll go to work now, and that could be through free agency, or through potential trade stuff. It could also be about the excitement if somebody pops from the development side of things. I think Jimmy had a pretty start to the year, but he really tailed off when the team needed him most. He should take some responsibility for that. We had a pretty frank discussion about that to challenge him to take his game to another level, and be able to help out a younger player.

“He played a lot with Ryan Spooner. I have to put ownership on Jimmy in terms of saying ‘Hey, I have to take more responsibility. It’s not just about finishing and scoring goals.’ He has the capacity to do that. He gets power play time and net-front time, and he needs to get to the hard areas of the ice with more consistency. It’s an area that he needs to continue to improve upon. We as an organization feel that we need to have players that are driven to get better.”

As far as the free agent options mentioned by Sweeney, Kyle Okposo and Troy Brouwer would be names to watch closely as they both fight the Black and Gold mold of winger with size, strength and finishing ability.

Clearly there’s no choice but for the 26-year-old Hayes to have a bounce-back season given that he’s signed for two years in Boston at $2.3 million per season, and that they need him with the right side of their forward group in flux. 

Ray Bourque arrested and charged with OUI Friday


Ray Bourque arrested and charged with OUI Friday

Bruins Hall of Fame defenseman Ray Bourque was arrested in Andover this weekend, and charged with operating under the influence of alcohol according to multiple reports.

Andover Police told CBS Boston that the former Bruins and Avalanche defenseman was taken into custody around 11:30 p.m. Friday night on Lowell Street. The Bruins legend has lived on the North Shore with his family since retiring from the NHL, and has been a constant presence in the community at charitable events and Bruins functions.

Bourque was released on bail. No additional information was immediately available

Saturday's Red Sox-Rangers lineups: Wright tries to stay on roll


Saturday's Red Sox-Rangers lineups: Wright tries to stay on roll

Knuckleballer Steven Wright will try to stay on a roll, as will the Red Sox, as they continue their three-game series tonight (9:20) against the Rangers in Arlington, Texas.

Wright (8-4, American League-leading 2.01 ERA) faces Rangers right-hander A.J. Griffin (3-0, 2.94), in his first start since coming off the 15-day disabled list.

The Red Sox rallied to win the series opener 8-7 with a four-run ninth inning.

The lineups:

Mookie Betts RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Travis Shaw 3B
Bryce Brentz LF
Christian Vazquez C
Steven Wright RHP

Shin-Soo Choo RF
Ian Desmond CF
Nomar Mazara LF
Adrian Beltre 3B
Prince Fielder DH
Roughned Odor 2B
Elvis Andrus SS
Mitch Moreland 1B
Robinson Chirinos C
A.J. Griffin RHP