New Celtics had no prior love for C's

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New Celtics had no prior love for C's

It's very, very, easy to hate the Celtics.

Not as a Celtics fan, of course, but as a fan or player of just about every other team in the NBA.

Don't believe it? Just ask two Celtics newcomers, Chris Wilcox and Keyon Dooling.

Both veterans have played against the Celtics many times in their careers, and at least over the last few years neither of them say anything nice about the team from an opponents perspective.

"Outside looking in you hate them, you know?" Wilcox said. "But when you're here, you love them. Because it's like a family. It's family-oriented. The guys in the locker room are great, the guys upstairs are great. So it's just like being home at the family reunion when you come here, because everybody is on the same page, everybody is about one thing and that's winning."

Wilcox is right on the money. Until you're accepted into the family, there's no way you'd understand what it's like. Kevin Garnett's scowl and bark, or Paul Pierce's and Rajon Rondo's on-court demeanor certainly won't earn them any friends on the opposing team, but that's fine with them.

Heck, guys they've won championships with who have now gone on to other teams probably hate them again.

Dooling certainly knows how easy it is for the Celtics to get under the skin of opponents. The C's and the Milwaukee Bucks, Dooling's former team, went at it on a few memorable occasions in recent seasons.

"As an opponent against them you really don' like playing against them" Dooling said. "They're very loud, they're very aggravating they're very, you know what I mean, they have that Celtic moxie so to speak.

"You didn't like that when you were playing against them. But now that I'm on this side I look forward to being the antagonist a little bit as well."

WATCH: Celtics vs. Kings

WATCH: Celtics vs. Kings

Tune into CSN to watch the Celtics host the Sacramento Kings at TD Garden. You can also click here to watch the Celtics livestream presented by McDonald's on the NBC Sports App.  Coverage begins at 7 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live Presented by ACE Ticket.

- Game Preview: Watch out for Cousins' supporting cast

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- Live Extra FAQ: All your questions answered

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- Talk about the game via social media on CSN's Pulse, presented by Ford

Celtics-Kings preview: Watch out for Cousins’ supporting cast

Celtics-Kings preview: Watch out for Cousins’ supporting cast

BOSTON –  There is no mistaking DeMarcus Cousins is priority No. 1 when it comes to beating the Sacramento Kings.
 
But dealing with elite individual players hasn’t been a huge problem for the Celtics.
 
It’s their supporting cast that are usually the game’s biggest difference-makers and where the Celtics have faltered.
 
Limiting Sacramento’s role players will be key to the Celtics (10-8) getting back on a winning track after losing 121-114 at home to the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday.
 
Going into that game, all eyes were on Andre Drummond who has emerged as one of the league’s premier centers. And the former UConn product didn’t disappoint as he scored 25 points to go with 17 rebounds. 
 
But Drummond’s play didn’t decide the game’s outcome.
 
It was the dribble-drive penetration of Ish Smith (19 points, eight rebounds, eight assists), the red-hot shooting of Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (25 points) and the inside-outside work of Jon Leuer (12 points, seven rebounds) that ultimately sealed the Celtics’ fate. 
 
The Kings (7-11) have a number of players that, in addition to Cousins, can be problematic for the Celtics if they are not careful.
 
Rudy Gay, whose name will continue to be thrown about as potentially being traded, has put up borderline All-Star numbers for most of his career.
 
This season, the 10-year veteran is averaging 19.6 points, 3.1 assists and 6.3 rebounds per game from the wing-forward position.
 
Darren Collison is averaging 12.9 points per game along with 4.9 assists from the point guard position. While he’s not known as a great shooter (he’s shooting 34.8 percent on 3s this season), his speed and ability to get into the paint is something the Celtics have to limit.
 
The bottom line is Boston’s defense has to do a better job at not only accounting for the King’s main star, but also the talent around him.
 
“There’s a reason why guys are in the NBA,” Boston’s Amir Johnson told CSNNE.com recently. “You know everybody in this league can play and if you’re not careful, they can play well against you and your team. We just have to do a better job defensively against everyone, really.”
 
And part of that starts with having the right attitude.
 
“We have to get a little more nastier on the defensive end and not let a team come in and get comfortable,” said Boston’s Jae Crowder. “It’s not been an ongoing thing. It happened [against Detroit] and it happened in the Denver game; a couple games. For the most part we’ve been trying to impose our will first.”