Garnett: 'If it's up to me, I'll live and die green.'


Garnett: 'If it's up to me, I'll live and die green.'

HOUSTON Kevin Garnett said he has no plans of waiving his no-trade clause, a position that - if he sticks to it - would prevent the Boston Celtics from moving him as part of a package with the Los Angeles Clippers.

Garnett responded with a "No" on Saturday when asked if he would waive his no-trade clause.

He later added, "If it's up to me, I'll live and die green."

Uh, it kind of is your call KG.

That's the beauty of being one of the few NBA players with the ability to veto any trade that they're involved in.

When reminded of this, Garnett said, "OK then. What we talking about?"

Still, there's no guarantee that Garnett will feel the same way if Danny Ainge, Boston's president of basketball operations, approaches him with a possible trade scenario that could only happen if Garnett agrees to be traded.

Of the teams out there, the Clippers are one of the few that might tempt Garnett to have a change of heart and leave Boston.

And Chris Paul, who has been consulted on most if not all moves made by the Clippers, is very much a fan of Garnett and has made no secret this weekend about wanting to play with him.

"He's one of the guys I genuinely appreciate and I've always said this, I'd love to have KG on my team," Paul said on Friday. "Because he's focused; he's focused and I love that about him."

A trade to the Clippers would move Garnett close to his offseason home in Malibu, Calif., and the Clippers are one of the top teams in the Western Conference now.

Already considered a threat out West, the addition of Garnett would cement their status as an NBA title contender this season.

But such a deal would also signal that the C's no longer see themselves among the top teams in the East, and that dreaded 'R' word - rebuild - will surely be in effect.

The reported deal would send DeAndre Jordan and Eric Bledsoe to Boston.

Bledsoe is a more than capable backup who has shown signs of having starter-like potential. In Boston's 106-104 win over the Clippers on Feb. 3, Bledsoe had 23 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds filling in for an injured Paul.

While Jordan has been among the factors elevating the Clippers into the upper echelon of Western Conference teams, Boston would be taking a major downgrade in terms of the defensive presence lost by Garnett relative to Jordan's game defensively.

The 6-foot-11 big man has a defensive rating of 102.9.

Among the current Celtics, the only Boston player with a worst defensive rating is Fab Melo who has played in just two games this season.

And for a franchise that prides itself on strong defensively, the addition of Jordan would indeed be a move looking ahead to the future as opposed to the present.

It's a risky proposition no matter how you look at it.

But in the end, the only person that matters in all this is Garnett who because of his no-trade clause, may very well hold the fate of not one but two franchises, in his hands.

Celtics' team plane receives bomb threat


Celtics' team plane receives bomb threat

BOSTON -- There was a bomb threat to the Boston Celtics’ team plane to Oklahoma City on Saturday afternoon, but no one was injured.

The incident will be investigated by NBA security which will work in conjunction with the FBI on this matter which was one of several hoaxes called into airports across the country on Saturday.

News of the bomb threat was first known when Celtics forward Jae Crowder posted an Instagram photo showing players departing the plane with the caption, “BOMB THREAT ON US”.

Celtics officials declined to comment on the matter and instead referred all bomb threat-related questions to the league office.

Messages to the league office were not immediately returned.

Celtics' ball movement among NBA's best, with or without Thomas

Celtics' ball movement among NBA's best, with or without Thomas

BOSTON – When it comes to winning basketball, keep it moving – the ball that is – has become a staple of the Celtics this season. 
And lately they’ve had to do it without Isaiah Thomas, the team’s leading scorer at 26 points per game as well as their top assists guy (6.2) who will miss hish third game in a row Sunday in Oklahoma City because of a right groin injury.
The Celtics have split their first two games without Thomas, with the most recent being a 101-94 home loss to Toronto on Friday.
When it comes to this team and ball movement, fans are just as divided when it pertains to whether the Celtics move the ball better without the high-scoring Thomas in the lineup. 
Regardless of what fans think they know about this team and how they move the ball, the numbers paint a very clear picture that this team’s ball movement is among the best in the NBA, with or without Thomas in the lineup. 

And that will be important on Sunday against an Oklahoma City team that doesn’t rely on the ball swinging from one side of the floor to the other, nearly as much as the Celtics. 
The Thunder, led by MVP candidate Russell Westbrook, are dead-last in the NBA when it comes to passes made per game (267.1). 
Meanwhile, the Celtics are at the opposite end of the passing game spectrum, averaging 331.7 passes per game, which is second in the NBA (Philadelphia, 354.3).
And in the two games without Thomas, Boston has averaged 347.0 passes per game, which ranks second in the NBA in that period of time. 
In addition to missing his points and assists, the Celtics must also find ways to make plays in filling the void left by a player who has the ball in his hands a lot of the time. 
Thomas’ usage percentage (percentage of plays used by a player while he’s on the floor) of 32.9 percent ranks seventh in the NBA, ahead of notable stars such as San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard (30.9 percent), Portland’s Damian Lillard (30.8 percent), New York’s Carmelo Anthony (29.5 percent), as well as Cleveland’s LeBron James (29 percent) and Golden State’s back-to-back NBA MVP Stephen Curry (28.2 percent).
So, considering how involved Thomas has been in the team’s offense, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the numbers in terms of passing and ball movement are better without him than they are when he’s on the floor playing. 
What should be surprising is that the gap statistically without him, isn’t greater. 
Boston has been a top five team when it comes to assists this season, currently third in the league with 24.7 assists per game. In the past two games without Thomas, the Celtics’ assists numbers have risen to 26.5 per game, but that only ranks fifth in the league in that span.
When it comes to potential assists and secondary assists (a.k.a. the “hockey” assist), Boston’s numbers have improved slightly without Thomas as well, but in each category Boston is ranked second in the league. 
And that ranking is with, and without Thomas in the lineup. 
While it’s not clear if Thomas knows just how close the numbers in terms of ball movement are with and without him playing, he is acutely aware that there are some who believe they are a better team in terms of keeping the ball moving without him.
“I can’t control that,” Thomas told reporters on Friday. “At this point, I laugh about it. I know what I mean to my teammates. I know what I mean to this organization, to Brad Stevens.”