Neely, Felger go at it over Thomas' playing time

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Neely, Felger go at it over Thomas' playing time

Oh, boy.

Don't mess with Seabass, Felger!

Mike Felger, on 98.5's Felger and Mazz Show (simulcasted on CSNNE) has an issue with the amount of games Tim Thomas has played in net for the Bruins as of late.

Thomas has played in 17 of the last 18 to be exact.

But asked about the reason, B's president Cam Neely got a bit testy, sarcastically telling Felger he'd 'love' to hear his way of doing things.

"Well it's more than we like, but tell me how we could have done anything differently," Neely said. "Walk me through it, love to hear it."

Felger suggested playing Turco and taking your lumps, to which Neely responded by saying, "And potentially what, fall out of the playoffs? Potentially be a lower seed than we really needed to be?"

Right now, the Bruins (93 points) are tucked into the No. 2 seed in the division. They won't make it to No 1, and have to win a couple more games to seal the No. 2 spot.

Felger then questioned whether Neely really thought the B's could have fallen out of the playoffs, as Buffalo currently holds on to the 8th seed with 86 points.

Were the Bruins panicking by playing Thomas so much?

"Certainly no panic, but we want to make sure we're solidifying the best possible playoff spot, and we take into consideration how our players are feeling, how they're playing, how the team's playing. All these things we take into consideration," Neely said.

Neely agrees with where Felger's coming from, but thinks the B's have been doing the right thing.

"Marty Turco came in here and he had to get accustomed to NHL shot, the size of the rinks, the size of the rink, where the pucks are coming from. We wanted to make sure he felt comfortable getting him back in the net and giving him a chance to succeed and as well as giving us a chance to win hockey games."

Celtics force overtime, come up short in 127-123 loss to Blazers

Celtics force overtime, come up short in 127-123 loss to Blazers

BOSTON – For the second time in as many games, the Boston Celtics ran into a team that played with a greater sense of desperation.

And the result was yet another defeat as the Portland Trail Blazers, playing their second game in less than 24 hours, were able to get off their losing skid with a 127-123 overtime win over the Celtics.

Boston (26-17) has now lost back-to-back games at home, while the Blazers (19-27) snapped a four-game losing streak.

In the extra session, Portland jumped out to a 117-113 lead only for Boston’s Al Horford scoring on a bank-shot in the paint and Thomas draining a go-ahead 3-pointer for Boston.

Portland regained the lead when Al-Farouq Aminu made a pair of free throws with 59.3 seconds to play to make it a 119-118 game.

Boston soon fell behind 122-118, but a pair of Thomas free throws with 44.8 seconds to play made it a two-point game.

Mason Plumlee scored with 24 seconds to play in overtime, and an Al Horford miss – rebounded by Plumlee who was then fouled by Horford – essentially put the game away with 13.5 seconds to play.

Boston found themselves down late in the fourth quarter and seemingly headed towards defeat, only to get an unexpected lift in the final seconds from Terry Rozier.

Trailing by three points late in the fourth, Boston had one last chance to force overtime so who did they turn to?

If you were thinking Thomas which is what the Blazers and most fans were thinking, you would have been dead wrong.

The fourth quarter may be Thomas’ time to shine, but at that point in the game it was Rozier’s moment as he drained a 3-pointer with 8.4 seconds left that ultimately forced overtime. He finished with 15 points, three rebounds and three assists off the bench.

The Blazers came into the game with the kind of potent scoring punch in the backcourt that strikes the fear into the heart of any defense, let alone one that has been as up and down as the Boston Celtics this season.

For most of the game, Portland’s 1-2 punch of Damian Lillard (28 points) and C.J. McCollum (35 points) lived up to the lofty billing as they combined for 63 points.

McCollum and Lillard both did their share of damage down the stretch, but it was their bench – specifically Meyers Leonard – whose play kept Portland in the game early on.

He finished with 17 points off the bench.

Boston led 65-56 at the half, but soon found itself in a 67-all game after McCollum made the second of two free throws.

But Boston countered with a put-back basket by Kelly Olynyk and a 3-pointer from Isaiah Thomas to push Boston’s lead to 72-67.

Once again the Blazers fought back and eventually took the lead 74-72 on a powerful put-back dunk by Haverill (Mass.) native Noah Vonleh.

Brad Stevens had seen enough of his team getting pushed around, as he called a time-out with 5:31 to play in the quarter.

It didn’t help as Portland continued to bully their way around the rim for second and third-shot opportunities with their lead peaking at 78-72 following a put-back basket by  Plumlee.

But the Celtics responded with a 7-2 spurt capped off by an end-to-end, driving lay-up by Rozier that cut Portland’s lead to 80-79 with 2:44 to play in the quarter. Boston continued to be within striking distance as the third quarter ended with the Celtics trailing 88-86.