Bass, Wilcox to return vs. Cavaliers

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Bass, Wilcox to return vs. Cavaliers

CLEVELAND Those double-teams of Paul Pierce and Ray Allen have seen the past couple of weeks?

They're not likely to see them as often now that Boston Celtics have Brandon Bass back in the fold.

The 6-foot-8 forward will make his return to the floor tonight against Cleveland after missing the previous six games due to swelling in his left knee.

Bass went through a full Celtics practice on Monday.

"Practice was cool," Bass said. "It felt good to be out there."

He added that he didn't feel any pain, but would need to work on improving his conditioning, having not played since Feb. 10 at Toronto.

The Celtics will also have Chris Wilcox available.

Wilcox suffered a groin injury against Dallas on Feb. 22, and was unable to play at Oklahoma City two nights later.

While both certainly can help the C's, it is Bass' return that has the potential to bolster a Celtics offense that has been surprisingly among the worst in the NBA.

Boston is averaging 89.6 points per game, which ranks 26th in the NBA.

And while Bass' 11.6 points per game will certainly help, often it is his presence on the floor that helps just as much.

"He spreads the floor," Rivers said. "When you have Kevin and Brandon out for any stretch, it's very difficult offensively."

Quotes, notes and stars: Price's struggles 'crushing me right now'

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Quotes, notes and stars: Price's struggles 'crushing me right now'

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 4-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays:

QUOTES
"I'm so much better than this. I've just got to get better. It's crushing me right now, but I'll get there." -- David Price

"I've just got to pitch better. That's what it is right now. It's not something else. It's not bad luck. It's me, so I've got to get better." -- Price

"We had the big opportunity with David [Ortiz] and Hanley [Ramirez] in the middle of the order and bases loaded, one out. Figure that's the time we can cash in. But that wasn't the case.'' -- John Farrell on a blown opportunity in the sixth inning

"It got a little worse; the best choice was to come out of the game.'' -- Hanley Ramirez, who left in the eighth with a strained back

NOTES
-- Jackie Bradley Jr., thrown out trying to swipe third base in the fifth, was caught stealing for the first time in his career, having been successful in his first 20 atttempts.

-- David Ortiz has reached base safely in 20 straight games.

-- The shutout suffered by the Red Sox was the first since April 19 -- also against Tampa Bay.

-- The loss marked only the third time this season that the Red Sox didn't collect an extra-base hit.

-- Boston is 2-7 agains the Rays in the last nine meetings between the two.

-- The Sox are now 5-10 against lefty starters this season.

-- David Price dropped to 1-3, 6.52 in five career starts against the Rays.

-- Price has allowed 57 earned runs this season, or three fewer than all of last year.

-- Price has allowed at least one homer in nine straight starts, a career-high streak.

STARS
1) Brandon Guyer: Activated earlier Wednesday after a DL stint for a hamstring strain, Guyer made his presence felt with a solo homer to lead off the second, then added a run-scoring double as part of the three-run third.

2) Matt Moore: The lefty entered the game with a bloated 5.04 ERA, but tamed the Red Sox with seven shutout innings. He didn't allow a base hit until the sixth and yielded just three overall.

3) Logan Forsythe: Forsythe smoked a double off Price to lead off the Tampa Bay first inning, signaling that it might be a long afternoon for the Red Sox lefty. He later singled and scored in the third.