Basketball as football

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Basketball as football

With Doc Rivers and Rajon Rondo both in attendance at Monday night's PatriotsTexans game, you knew that football would be on everyone's mind Tuesday at Celtics practice.

And guess what? You knew right.

"Rondo is our Tom Brady, as far as being the point guardquarterback," Doc said this afternoon. "Kevin Garnett probably as far as all of the relationship stuff. Tom Brady has got to be right there as one of the best in history. It's surgical watching him play."

Asked about the comparison, Rondo said: "Point guard and quarterback are pretty much the same thing. Tom Brady? I don't know about that."

I don't know either, but I definitely agree that point guard and quarterback are cut from the same uniform cloth. And I don't think I need to explain that any further. I mean, you get it, right? We all get it. Folks have been comparing point guards and quarterbacks since the beginning of time. And I mean that literally.

But what about the other positions? How do the other four spots in a basketball line-up best relate to the NFL game?

I'd say that centers are most like middle linebackers. Ideally, they're the base of communication on the defensive end. The core that you build your entire defense around.

The power forward especially in today's game is your tight end. A guy who can get out and run, and be a factor on the offensive end when you need him to. But also a guy who's strong enough and tough enough to hold his own in the trenches; who can be gritty and grimy and smash a few heads when you need him to.

As for the last two spots? You can make an argument that both the shooting guard and small forward are receivers in their own right. They both are best when getting out in open space and filling the lanes, and those with the greatest combination of speed, size, agility and power are generally the most successful. Based on that, I'd say the shooting guards are more of a slot receiver the smaller, quicker, shiftier guys who (in the half court set) get open by maneuvering through creases in the defense. Meanwhile the small forwards (although there are exceptions) are your game breakers. Your home run hitters.

And that brings us to the baseball analogies . . .

Nah, just kidding. Maybe another day.

And definitely not tomorrow.

Much like the C's, tomorrow it's back to being all about basketball.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Thomas won’t play Friday night vs. Raptors

Thomas won’t play Friday night vs. Raptors

WALTHAM, Mass. – The Celtics are about to hit one of the toughest stretches of the season and they’ll have to do it for at least one more game without their leading scorer, Isaiah Thomas. 
 
Thomas, who suffered a right groin injury on Monday against the Houston Rockets, did not play on Wednesday against Orlando and said that he will not play in Friday night’s game against the Toronto Raptors. 
 
“It’s day to day. I want to play. I want to be out there but it’s the smart decision to hold out and wait until it’s 100 percent,” Thomas said during a Season of Giving event for children of the Military Friends Foundation held at the Celtics’ practice facility. “If it was a playoff game I would be out there for sure.”
 
However, after consulting with a number of medical personnel, Thomas decided the best thing for him and the Celtics was to sit out Friday’s game which, along with Wednesday in Orlando, will be the first two he has missed since the 2014-2015 season. 
 
Thomas said there’s no specific timetable for his return, but he said he is planning to travel with the team to Oklahoma City for their matchup against the Thunder on Sunday. 
 
“It’s eating me a live to sit, but I have to do what’s best for my body, I have to do what’s best for this team,” Thomas said. “I need to be 100 percent healthy to give this team what I can give them.”
 
The Celtics are hoping for similar success they had Wednesday in Orlando (a 117-87 victory) on Friday against Toronto.
 
“They played a hell of a game last night,” Thomas said. “They’ll be ready tomorrow.”
 
The fact that Thomas intends to travel with the team is a good sign that the groin injury isn’t too serious. 
 
If he doesn’t play at Oklahoma City, that likely means he’ll return to action on Wednesday at San Antonio. 
 
“I’m going to do what I can to get back out there on the court,” Thomas said. “I gotta be smart about this. I don’t want this to linger on this season.”
 
Replacing Smart in the lineup against Toronto will most likely be Marcus Smart. 
 
Smart, who has been a replacement starter at small forward and point guard this season, had 13 points, three rebounds, three assists and two steals against the Magic.