HARTFORD -- The Boston Celtics traveled to Connecticut to play their third preseason game on Saturday. In spite of having two under their belts, it was their first match up against another NBA team after playing against European squads during their recent trip overseas.
Following a loss to Fenerbahce Ulker (Instanbul) and a win against Emporio Armani Milano (Italy), the Celtics fell to the New York Knicks in overtime, 98-95, in their return to the United States. Regardless of the end result, it beneficial for them to get back to NBA action.
"Obviously the Knicks are better than both the teams we played," said Rajon Rondo. "They have All-Stars and great players, so it was good to get out there and compete with a team you know you're going to go against at least six or seven times throughout the season."
For some players, this game was just another preseason match against their Atlantic Division foes, a team the Celtics frequently play each season.
"It's basketball," said veteran Brandon Bass. "It's the same."
But for the rookies on the team, the Knicks were the first NBA faces they saw in their careers. The difference between players in this league and overseas was noticeable for them.
"I got to play a little bit and I kind of got a little nervous in the game," said Fab Melo. "I think the pace is a little slower but the explosion is really fast. And they make shots, they cut, they drive all the time, so you've got to be alert all day."
The Celtics will play their next preseason game on Monday against the Philadelphia 76ers. The following night, they will hit the parquet for their preseason opener at the TD Garden against the Brooklyn Nets.
FOXBORO -- The Patriots have added some receiver depth to their locker room by signing Da'Ron Brown to their practice squad.
Brown, 25, was a seventh-round pick of the Chiefs in 2015 and spent his rookie season on the Kansas City practice squad. At Northern Illinois, the 6-foot, 199-pounder caught 155 passes in four years, accumulating 2,295 yards and scoring 19 touchdowns. He also rushed for two scores in his career. As a senior in 2014, he caught 68 passes for 1,065 yards.
With the signing, the Patriots have filled out their practice squad. The team has had an opening on its 10-man unit since the Colts signed away receiver Devin Street for their 53-man roster.
With just four receivers on the Patriots roster, not including special teams ace Matthew Slater, they've loaded up on receiver depth through their practice squad with Brown, Devin Lucien and DeAndrew White.
Here are the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while wondering exactly what “semi-exact” means.
*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Josh Cooper has a piece on Jumbo Joe Thornton bringing an ageless energy to Team Canada.
*If you’re wondering where former B’s farmhand goaltender Jeremy Smith ended up, he’s now with the Colorado Avalanche.
*The Hockey News believes that the Bruins will be back in the playoffs this season after a two-year absence.
*While I appreciate the Hockey News linking to my work, I feel like it’s a key piece of info that I’m the Bruins Insider for CSN New England and not NESN.
*Is Team Europe coach Ralph Krueger the man with the plan to defeat a Team Canada juggernaut in the World Cup of Hockey.
*Dustin Byfuglien had an interesting take on the World Cup after flaming out with Team USA: “It is what it is. I didn’t really enjoy it.”
*For something completely different: this is not your father’s Converse, but it’s a sleek look that the kids are gonna love.