Boston Celtics

Celtics adjust, find a way with Pierce fouled out


Celtics adjust, find a way with Pierce fouled out

BOSTON -- Paul Pierce left the court just 38 seconds into overtime, frustrated and disappointed that he would have to watch the next four minutes unfold from the sidelines.

Pierce fouled out of Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals battle against the Miami Heat on Sunday, the third time this postseason and second game in this series.

Less than two minutes after picking up his sixth foul, the Heats top weapon, LeBron James, also fouled out, softening the blow of Pierces inability to contribute.

It was very frustrating, Pierce said after the Celtics 93-91 win. But its gratifying when you see the other star player fouling out, also.

Unlike Game 2 against the Heat in which Pierce fouled out and the Celtics lost by four points in overtime, the Cs banded together for a win without their captain, more reminiscent of Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Philadelphia 76ers.

From the bench, Pierce watched his team score only four points while limiting their opponent to only two, enough to hang on for a 93-91 victory.

Well, we have experience, said Doc Rivers. I dont know what series it was, the Philly series? I cant remember anymore with Paul fouling out.

Playing without Pierce late in the game has forced the Celtics to make offensive adjustments. Without one of their main scoring options, other players have had to step up and contribute at the basket.

It changes when Paul goes out, said Kevin Garnett. The scorers, Rajon (Rondo), myself, Ray (Allen), and everybody has to pick up the load a little bit as far as being more offensive-minded. Like Ive always said, we are a defensive team that can score the basketball.

When Paul goes out, Rajon knows to be a lot more aggressive. Ray knows to be a lot more aggressive. We encourage MP (Mickael Pietrus). I think Quis (Marquis Daniels) was in there in the latter part of the game. Just stay aggressive. As long as we are making stops, we can turn it over into some easy offense and were a hard team to beat at times.

Pierce knows what is at stake in Game 5 and wants to be on the court every minute possible on Tuesday night in Miami.

Weve got to win a game in Miami, of course, he said. We have a chance of winning this series. Its not going to be easy, a good old classic bar fight. Going into it, youve got to expect every game to be like this.

Ainge: More tests to confirm Isaiah Thomas (hip) is on track

Ainge: More tests to confirm Isaiah Thomas (hip) is on track

BOSTON – Isaiah Thomas will undergo additional testing prior to the start of training camp, which as you might expect has elevated the concern level among Celtics Nation.

But Danny Ainge, Boston’s president of basketball operations, told that the tests have more to do with re-affirming that Thomas remains on a good track health-wise, than any added concern for the two-time All-Star’s health.

Thomas, who will be an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2018, suffered a right hip injury last season that limited his effectiveness in the Celtics’ conference finals matchup with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Boston eventually lost the series in five games, with Thomas unable to play due to the hip injury in the last three.

Ainge said earlier that Thomas’ injury would not require surgery.

"There's nothing else, other than what Brad [Stevens] said," Ainge told

Speaking on the Vertical Podcast with Chris Mannix, coach Brad Stevens said Thomas will have another scan in early September when Thomas returns to Boston.

From there, a more exact timeline will be established for Thomas’ return.

“It’s been a lot of appropriate rest, a lot of rehab,” Stevens said. “There have been some good strides here certainly in the last month or few weeks, but we’re not going to know that until after that early September timeframe.

Stevens added, “We want what’s best for Isaiah. We want to make sure that when he is ready to roll, which hopefully is sooner rather than later, that he is ready to roll at his highest level and for the longest possible time, obviously, right? So that’s a lot more important to me than anything else.”

Markieff and Marcus Morris court date set for August 28

Markieff and Marcus Morris court date set for August 28

BOSTON – NBA players Markieff and Marcus Morris, each facing a pair of aggravated assault charges stemming from an incident in 2015, will have their day in court on August 28.

Marcus, who was acquired by Boston via trade from Detroit this summer, as well as his brother Markieff who plays for Washington, will appear telephonically according to Maricopa County court officials.

Marcus and his twin brother Markieff were allegedly involved in a January 24, 2015 incident in Phoenix that left Erik Hood who attended the same Philadelphia high school as the Morris twins, with a broken nose, abrasions and a large bump on his head.

Hood told police that he was held down while four men assaulted him outside of a high school basketball game in Phoenix, and that the Morris twins were among those to assault him. Authorities said a witness identified the Morris twins as having been present at the scene during the incident.

According to Hood, he had at times coached them in addition to occasionally giving them rides to practice. But the relationship went south about a year before the twins were drafted. That is when they reportedly found “inappropriate” text messages from Hood to their mother.

The Morris twins have said they had nothing to do with the incident, and added that they have no ties to Hood.

A conviction could potentially result in jail time – each of the aggravated assault charges carries a maximum jail sentence of 3 ¾ years – in addition to a 10-game suspension under Article VI, Section 7 of the league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement which states that a player will be suspended for “a minimum of ten (10) games” if they are convicted, pleads guilty or pleads no contest or “nolo contendere” to a violent felony.

And while pleading down to a misdemeanor charge may result in the Morris twins avoiding jail while being put on probation and likely paying a fine, that too would likely lead to some type of league suspension.

Article 35 of the league’s Constitution gives Commissioner Adam Silver the power to suspend a player if he, “shall have been guilty of conduct that does not conform to standards of morality or fair play, that does not comply at all times with all federal, state, and local laws, or that is prejudicial or detrimental to the Association.”