Hollins provides energy, hustle for C's

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Hollins provides energy, hustle for C's

ATLANTA On the same day that the Boston Celtics added former Boston College forwardcenter Sean Williams, the previous "new guy" to the Celtics frontcourt Ryan Hollins has his best game as a Celtic.

Coincidence?

No one knows for sure -- but you won't find C's head coach Doc Rivers complaining or questioning it.

"We always say you push and pull and if you're not playing and a new guy comes in and you think he's going to take your minutes, then you should play harder," Rivers said. "It's a man's game."

Hollins had eight points and five rebounds in Boston's 97-92 loss to Atlanta while playing more than 30 minutes - all season highs with the C's.

But his impact on the game had little to do with scoring and rebounding.

He provided energy, showed great hustle at both ends of the floor, doing many of the things that the Celtics were hoping to see him contribute once he signed with the Celtics.

However, with a lack of practice time and the Celtics fighting for the Atlantic Division title and the No. 4 seed that came with it, there just weren't many opportunities for him to play.

Now that the Atlantic division title has been clinched in addition to Greg Stiemsma having foot issues, Hollins is sure to see more minutes in the remaining games prior to the playoffs.

Stiemsma, who did not play in the second half of the Hawks loss due to soreness in his left foot (which has plantar fasciitis), was happy to see Hollins get a chance to play major minutes for a change.

"It was definitely good to see him go out and play aggressive," Stiemsma said.

Hollins understands that because of where the C's are positioned, these games will go far in terms of making an impression on the Celtics coaching staff as to whether they can rely on him in a pinch.

As much as the players pull for one another, none of them wants to ride the pine, either.

"I wanted to come out and kind of get playoff-ready (against Atlanta)," Hollins said. "Show coach (Rivers) the things I can do and give myself be ready to play those minutes on the court."

And while the scoring was nice, Hollins knows his greatest contributions to the C's most nights may involve him only touching the ball on rebounds.

"When I'm playing with the Big Four out there, my game is going to be trapping, rebounding, defending, those little things," Hollins said. "I'm not going to get touches. I understand that. The little things that don't show up, I can control that."

Ravens’ Suggs submits half-hearted effort at Brady snub

Ravens’ Suggs submits half-hearted effort at Brady snub

Terrell Suggs keeps doing his best to pump air into his one-sided “feud” with Tom Brady.

Ever since Brady begged for a flag on Suggs after a benign hit back in 2009, Suggs has made it his mission to speak truth to the perceived power of Brady.

“Everyone just seems to worship the guy so much,” he once said. “Not me, though.”

So, Suggs has called basically derided Brady as a crybaby and occasionally called into question the validity of the Patriots championships.

It’s clearly all for show. When Deflategate was at its height in June of 2015, Suggs said of Brady, “The guy is a winner. He’s won with whatever kind of personnel that he’s had. So I don’t think [Deflategate] really tarnished it … Everybody needs something to write about and needs something to talk about. It’s always something. I’m leaving that alone.”

This week, Suggs smirkingly refused to use Brady’s name when discussing the Patriots leading up to Monday night’s game.

Asked about Brady earning his 201st win as an NFL starter, Suggs said, "He's pretty good. Like I said, wins are wins and numbers are numbers. Numbers don't lie. He's pretty good."

Suggs went on, avoiding Brady’s name. It’s something he’s done in the past for whatever reason. But he’s also been complimentary of the Patriots and Brady as well, saying that, when it’s done, there will be three quarterbacks in the conversation for best-ever: Montana, Unitas and Brady. 

The only time Brady’s verbally stepped out against Suggs and the Ravens is in response to their barbs. In 2010, Brady stated that the Ravens, “Talk a lot for beating us once in nine years.”

Brady also chastised Ravens coach John Harbaugh – now there’s a guy who whines! – after the 2014 AFC Divisional Playoff Game when the Patriots snookered the Ravens with intricate formations. That’s about it for return fire.

 

One-sided feud: Brady praises Suggs for playmaking, instincts

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One-sided feud: Brady praises Suggs for playmaking, instincts

FOXBORO -- Terrell Suggs kept up what has been a years-long campaign to mock Tom Brady's public perception by refusing to say Brady's name this week. 

Outside of a quick, "Talk a lot for beating us once in nine years" comment back in 2010, Brady has typically let the feud be one-sided. That continued on this week when Brady said the Ravens edge defender looked as good as ever during a Westwood One radio interview.

He continued his praise of Suggs during a press conference Thursday.

"I think every year, he's had pretty major injuries, and he comes back and looks like he didn't miss a beat," Brady said. "It's his 14th year, he's been a great player for as long as he's been in the league. I think he does a lot of things really well.

"He's got all the rush moves, he actually drops into coverage, he bats down balls, he butchers the tight ends coming off the line of scrimmage. He's really a playmaker for their team. It's not just sacking the quarterback, probably like most defensive ends. He makes plays in a lot of ways. I've seen him intercept slip screens, jumping up and picking [Ben] Roethlisberger off going the other way. 

"I think he has great instincts. He definitely plays with his instincts. If he feels like the ball's going to go inside, he rips inside and tries to take it away even though that's not his assignment. I think 99 percent of the time, the ball goes inside. I think he just has great instincts for what he's doing.

"You can't ever really count on the same thing from him. I think you just try to play him straight up and see what he's going to do because I think he makes a lot of really good decisions out there and he makes a lot of plays."

Brady didn't say Suggs' name during the course of his answer, but he left no doubt that there's a level of respect there for his game. 

I think all these games are kind of the same. I just look at the opp and look at what they do. The only thing that matters is what we do this week of practice and in the game. I think you just try to put everything aside and, whether it was that or whether it was playoff game a couple years ago, whether it was the rs game a couple years ago or C games, none of those really nmatter. It's really going to be about what this team does this week and like I said, coach will try to put a lot of urgerncy on that. We understand that. We know we're facing a team that's 7-5, their at the top of their division. They have a lot of conf in what they do and wso do we. It's going to be a good, tough matchup.