How about them Heatles?!

623830.jpg

How about them Heatles?!

They lost by not one, not two, not three, but 19 POINTS last night in Indiana, and in the process, provided the Heat Haters with ammunition for days. Or at least two, at which point Miami will re-take the court and either right their shaky ship or slam into an iceberg.

Right now, it certainly feels like theyre heading towards the latter, but we all know better than to assume that much. The way things go, Miami's just as likely to re-group and win a title as they are to choke away another post season. And as fans, the best thing we can do is borrow a mind eraser from one of those million Men In Black 3 ads, take it to the head and move on with clear, unbiased conscience.

However, there was one aspect of Miamis Game 3 debacle that especially as it relates to the Celtics is worth a closer look.

The third quarter altercation between Dwyane Wade and Erik Spoelstra.

If you didn't catch it, here's the video. In it, you'll see Wade and Spo on the sidelines, face-to-face in a heated conversation. After a few seconds, Wade dismissively nudges Spoelstra aside and walks away with his recently trademarked sourpuss. At this point, Spoelstra shoots out one more verbal dagger, which clearly hits home, and leads Wade to circle back around to get in his coach's face. Thankfully (for the Heat), team grandfather Juwan Howard intercepts Wade, and the Captain settles on bitching out his coach from a far.

And that's a wrap. It was a beautiful thing. Just another step in Wade's transformation from the only likable piece of Miami's super team to the main source anger and hatred. Congrats, Dwyane!

Anyway, I said I'd bring this back to the Celtics, so here we go: At this point, it's obviously too early and altogether ridiculous to speculate about a CelticsHeat Eastern Conference Finals. It seemed so easy before the second round got under way, but now that we're in the thick of things you know, both teams have other stuff to worry about.

BUT, we're human. Even if both the C's and especially the Heat have their hands full, you can't help let your mind wander to that would-be ECF. I think it's still the most likely match-up. Deep down, I think it's still the outcome that we all want to see.

Miami vs. Boston.

One last hurrah. And if we ever get there, here's one undeniable advantage in the Celtics corner: The relationship with their coach.

As we're well aware, the Celtics would do anything for Doc Rivers. They'd take a charge. Run through a wall. Would they kill a man? YES. Anything. And when the game, the season, contracts, careers and legacies are the line regardless of any sort of drama that may be swirling around the locker room the Celtics believe in their coach.

And while one ugly incident doesnt say everything about the relationship between Dwyane Wade and Erik Spoelstra, or Spoelstra and the rest of the team, it does say a lot.

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

Magic Johnson named Lakers president of basketball ops, Kupchak fired

Magic Johnson named Lakers president of basketball ops, Kupchak fired

Magic Johnson was named the Los Angeles Lakers' president of basketball operations after longtime Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak and vice president of basketball ops Jim Buss were fired, the team announced.

"Today I took a series of actions I believe will return the Lakers to the heights [late owner] Dr. Jerry Buss demanded and our fans rightly expect,” Jeanie Buss, Jerry Buss' daughter, Jim Buss' brother and Lakers president and co-owner, said in a statement. “Effective immediately, Earvin Johnson will be in charge of all basketball operations and will report directly to me. Our search for a new General Manager to work with Earvin and Coach Luke Walton is well underway and we hope to announce a new General Manager in short order. Together, Earvin, Luke and our new General Manager will establish the foundation for the next generation of Los Angeles Lakers greatness.”

Johnson, the Hall of Famer guard who led L.A. to five NBA titles, said in the same statement: “It’s a dream come true to return to the Lakers as President of Basketball Operations working closely with Jeanie Buss and the Buss family. Since 1979, I’ve been a part of the Laker Nation and I’m passionate about this organization. I will do everything I can to build a winning culture on and off the court. We have a great coach in Luke Walton and good young players. We will work tirelessly to return our Los Angeles Lakers to NBA champions.”

Johnson, part of a group that owns MLB's Los Angeles Dodgers, returned to the organization as an adviser earlier this month. Johnson coached the Lakers briefly in the 1993-94 season, going 5-11. 

Johnson's new job with the Lakers won't change his role with the Dodgers, according to the L.A. Times.

The current Lakers have the third-worst record in the NBA at 19-39 after finishing with the second-worst mark in the league (17-65) last season. Kupchak was named an assistant GM under Jerry West in 1986 and in 2000 took over for West as GM. 


 

Drummond to Boston? Pistons big man's tweets fuel speculation

Drummond to Boston? Pistons big man's tweets fuel speculation

BOSTON -- Two of the NBA’s biggest names on the trade market, Serge Ibaka and DeMarcus Cousins, changed zip codes (Ibaka to Toronto from Orlando, Cousins to New Orleans from Sacramento) without the Celtics showing much interest in swinging a deal for either player.

MORE TRADE TALK

Could it be because they had their sights set on Detroit’s Andre Drummond all along?
 
Pistons general manager/head coach Stan Van Gundy has made no secret about talking with lots of teams about his players leading up to the trade deadline, well aware that his team has been one of the league’s biggest underachievers.

Detroit (27-30) is eighth in the Eastern Conference, trailing first-place Cleveland by 13 games.
 
Drummond was reportedly offered to Sacramento as part of a deal for Cousins, so it should not come as a surprise that his name has found its way into the rumor mill.
 
Still, Drummond only added fuel to the rumor mill fire by re-tweeting the eyeball emojis posted by the Celtics' Isaiah Thomas, something Thomas did shortly before Boston added Al Horford to the mix last summer.


 
And then Drummond followed that up by posting his own set of eyeball emojis on Tuesday, which adds to the speculative nature of a trade-deadline season that ends Thursday at 3 p.m.


 
Drummond, a former UConn standout, is an easy-going, fun-loving guy, so the emoji stuff isn’t all that out of character for him. But he also changed his Twitter profile picture to him waving goodbye. after removing Pistons information from his bio.

Is he pulling our leg, or giving a heads-up that the Celtics are close to pulling off a trade?
 
A league source tells CSNNE.com that while no deal is imminent, Boston is a possible landing spot for Drummond if the Pistons are, in fact, planning on trading him. That, says the source,"is not a definite. [Van Gundy] knows he has to do something significant with that team, if not at the deadline [then] definitely this summer.

"So he’s looking to find out the value for all his guys, Drummond included.”