Bass' debut a bittersweet experience

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Bass' debut a bittersweet experience

NEW YORK As Brandon Bass packed up the last of his things before the team headed to Miami, he will look back at his Boston Celtic debut as a bittersweet experience.

He had 20 points and 11 rebounds Sunday, the kind of performance that would be music to the ears of any coach.

But it came in a 106-104 loss to New York, a game that was up for grabs until the final horn sounded right after Kevin Garnett missed a relatively wide open jumper.

"I mean . . . I just wanted to come out and contribute in any way I can," said Bass, visibly disappointed with the game's outcome. "I just wish we could have won tonight; I just wish we could have won."

Bass is new to the Celtics, so he hasn't been around this group long enough to know that, win or lose, this team is all about the next game, the next opportunity to be great.

And when they see how Bass performed in his first game, still learning the C's system, you can understand why coach Doc Rivers is excited about what awaits the C's this year with Bass as a main cog off the bench.

"He can play; the kid can play," Rivers said. "He's tough. He can finish. He can offensive rebound. He can do a lot of things."

Making what he did on Sunday even more impressive was that despite the numbers, Bass still has a ways to go before he understands fully how to play within Rivers' system.

"He's doing it right now, second-guessing half the things he's doing because of the execution part of it," Rivers said. "He's late on a lot of stuff because he's just not sure yet. He's just going to keep getting better and better as the year goes on."

Rondo says he will not play tonight

Rondo says he will not play tonight

Rajon Rondo, out with a fractured right thumb, will not play for the Chicago Bulls against the Celtics tonight in Game 5 of their first-round playoff series at TD Garden, according to multiple reports.

The series is tied at 2.

Rondo, the Bulls point guard who played the first two game of the series, was reportedly going to try and test the thumb tonight but told reporters Wednesday morning he couldn’t play. 

Game 6 is Friday in Chicago. Game 7, if necessary, is Sunday in Boston.  Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg called Rondo's return a "longshot."

More to come. 
 

POLITICO sees Epstein as potential savior for Democrats

POLITICO sees Epstein as potential savior for Democrats

A piece that ran on POLITICO Wednesday morning explored an interesting possibility: A potential political career for longtime baseball executive Theo Epstein. 

The piece, titled “Could Theo Epstein Perform a Miracle for the Democrats?” comes a month after Fortune magazine ranked the Cubs president of baseball operations No. 1 on its annual ranking of the world’s greatest leaders. In the POLITICO article, Ben Strauss, in addition to noting the 43-year-old’s accomplishments with the Red Sox and Cubs, hits on several instances in which Epstein’s leadership has been mentioned in relation to politics. 

Strauss then goes on to interview CNN senior political commentator (and Cubs fan) David Axelrod about whether Epstein could be a saving grace with “Democrats on the lookout for a new generation of talent.”

The interview sees both POLITICO and Axelrod compare Epstein to Barack Obama. Says Axelrod: 

They both have two kinds of intelligence: emotional intelligence and a more linear intelligence. They both have the self-confidence to surround themselves with very smart people. Theo’s had a core group around him (general manager Jed Hoyer and head of amateur scouting Jason McLeod) since the beginning in Boston. It’s striking how much he relishes smart people around him and has the confidence to be challenged...Obama had it, too. I would add that Epstein has learned on the job. In Boston he was a pioneer [in using statistical analysis]...He’s told me that he used to be dismissive of the touchy-feely stuff [in evaluating baseball players], but now his scouts write five-page essays about the guys they’re going to draft. In the same way, Obama would tell you he was a better president at the end of eight years than at the beginning. He was smart enough to learn on the job, too.

Asked whether Epstein could win a statewide race for governor or Senate in Illinois, Axelrod replied, “Yeah, he could,” but questions whether Epstein has “the desire to hold public office.”

“I think Theo would be frustrated in public office because of the situation he’s in now,” Axelrod said. “He basically has free rein to do what he needs to do for the success of the organization. That is not the case in politics—you’re seeing that with the governor in Illinois (Bruce Rauner) right now. You have to deal with legislatures and all kinds of public stakeholders. And if you’re used to making things happen, I’m not sure the Senate would be a particularly satisfying job for you. When I talked to him on my podcast...about what he might want to do next...he allowed that he might want to own a team sometime and use that team or use that platform to try to impact on a community. He clearly cares about the larger world and wants to make an impact...But there are many, many reasons I think Cubs fans can relax and enjoy the benefits of his leadership for many years to come.”