Box Score Bank: European Vacation

808636.jpg

Box Score Bank: European Vacation

This afternoon, the Celtics leave Boston for a week-long European Training Camp adventure. And if you're even somewhat familiar with the Green, you're familiar with the fact this is the second time in the Kevin Garnett era that the C's will start a season overseas.

But while this year's trip only consists of games with European teams, the Celtics' 2007 voyage was an All-NBA exhibition . . . and makes for a great Box Score Bank.

So, let's set our sights on . . . October 6, 2007.

"Crank That" by Soulja Boy was in its first of five glorious weeks atop the Billboard charts. The Farrelly Brothers "The Heartbreak Kid" was No. 1 at the Box Office. Fab Melo was a high school sophomore getting ready to start his second season of competitive basketball. The Celtics hadn't won an NBA title in 21 years . . .

And over in Rome, the Big 3 era kicked off with a four-point win over the Raptors.

Final Score: Celtics 89, Raptors 85

Here are some highlights to get the nostalgia pumping. (Also: Please stick around for, or click ahead to the Garnett dunk at the one minute mark, and file it away for the next time someone tries to tell you that No. 5 is looking like the "old KG.")

Paul Pierce led the way for Boston with 21 points, Garnett added 19 point and 16 rebounds, and Ray Allen chipped in 10 points. (shooting only 1-6 from three).

Garnett also picked up a technical foul. I assume, for an altercation with either Andrea Bargnani, Jose Calderon, Carlos Delfino, Jorge Gabajosa, Rasho Nesterovic or any number of the European fans in attendance.

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

Blakely: Celtics made the right choice in not pursuing Cousins

Blakely: Celtics made the right choice in not pursuing Cousins

NEW ORLEANS -- There will be a significant faction of Celtics Nation who will see DeMarcus Cousins’ trade to New Orleans as a lost opportunity for the C's, who could have offered a much more enticing trade package than the one the Sacramento Kings accepted.
 
The Kings received nothing even remotely close to a king’s ransom for Cousins, acquiring him in exchange for rookie Buddy Hield, journeyman Langston Galloway and ex-Pelican Tyreke Evans (who has never been the same since his Rookie of the Year season in 2010), along with a protected first-round pick and a future second-round selection.

RELATED STORIES

While the knee-jerk reaction is to focus on why Boston decided to not pursue a trade for Cousins, more important is what the non-decision means for the moment and going forward.
 
Think about what the Celtics have done in the last three-plus seasons.
 
They went from being a lottery team to one that has the second-best record in the East. They're holding the potential No. 1 overall pick in the upcoming draft; at worst, the pick will be in the top four or five. They have three of the most team-friendly contracts (Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder) in the NBA. They have promising prospects overseas as well as in the D-League. And they're led by a coach who has improved his coaching acumen -- and the team’s win total -- every year he's been on the job.
 
And it's all enveloped by a culture with a high level of selflessness, which has created a locker-room environment that has been more about fighting for each other than fighting one another or others off the court.
 
Do you really think Cousins’ talent would have trumped the baggage he'd be bringing to the Celtics if they'd acquired him?
 
For him to have fit in with this team would have required him to make the kind of changes that, frankly, I just don’t see him being capable of making at this point.
 
On more than one occasion, “not fitting in” with the Celtics culture was given to me as the reason why a Cousins-to-Boston trade never gained any traction with the team’s brass. Or coaching staff, for that matter.
 
While there's no denying that he's arguably the best center in the NBA, Cousins is a high-risk, high-reward talent that makes sense to pursue if you're a franchise which has nothing to lose by adding him to the mix. Like, say, New Orleans.
 
The Pelicans are 11th in the Western Conference despite having Anthony Davis, who has been asked to carry the weight of a franchise that has yet to figure out the best combination of talent to surround him with and find success.
 
The addition of Cousins not only provides Davis some major help, but serves as a reminder of just how desperate the Pelicans are.
 
While there are mixed reports on whether the package of assets the Kings agreed to was the best they could have received for Cousins, there was no way they were going to get anything close to comparable talent in exchange for him.
 
And that was solely due to the risk that any team was willing to take on in order to acquire him.
 
At some point, the Celtics need to take advantage of an opportunity to go all-in for a superstar player. But this was not that time, or that player.

Blakely: Pelicans form arguably the best frontcourt with Cousins-Davis

Blakely: Pelicans form arguably the best frontcourt with Cousins-Davis

A. Sherrod Blakely breaks down the DeMarcus Cousins trade to the New Orleans Pelicans