Rivers agrees to 5-year extension

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Rivers agrees to 5-year extension

Breathe a little bit easier Celtics fans, Doc Rivers will be with the team for at least five more years.

The team's director of basketball operations, Danny Ainge, told CSNNE'sGreg Dickerson that Rivers has reached an agreement on a five-yearcontract extension. Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports that the Celtics will pay Rivers 35 million over that period.

After being eliminated by the Heat in the second round of the playoffs, Rivers stated that he was "leaning heavily" towards coming back. The length of the contract, however, comes as a bit of surprise. Rivers has taken the last couple of years on a year-by-year basis, stating numerous times that he eventually wanted to take time off and spend it with his family. Many assumed that he might ride out the Big Three era and part ways, but the new extension proves otherwise.

Doc just finished his 7th season as Celtics head coach, and currently has the 3rd most regular season wins by a coach (336) behind Red Auerbach (795) and Tommy Heinsohn (427).

His coaching career as a Celtic has been nothing short of a roller-coaster. Rivers wasn't always as highly regarded as he is now, and was in fact a lot of fans' target during the Celtics franchise worst 18-game losing streak before Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen came to town.

Because he had the trust of the Celtics front office, Rivers was kept on.

Now, that relationship is stronger than ever, as Rivers and Ainge have perhaps the best on-the-court and off-the-court relationship among all NBA teams' owners and coaches.

With the core players and Rivers returning for next season, another title run is in the works, with plans to build a solid and capable bench around them.

The extension allows Rivers to have a hand in the post-Big Three era, an era that at least for now seems to be centered around Rajon Rondo and (presumably) Jeff Green.

Chevrolet SportsNet Central at 6:00pm and CSNNE.com will bring you the entire interview between Dickerson and Danny Ainge later today.

Ainge: Isaiah Thomas visiting hip specialists, no decision yet on surgery

Ainge: Isaiah Thomas visiting hip specialists, no decision yet on surgery

BOSTON – The last 2 1/2 games for the Celtics have come without Isaiah Thomas (right hip) and it has certainly been a factor in Boston trailing Cleveland 3-1 in the Eastern Conference Finals heading into tonight’s must-win for the Celtics to keep their season alive.
 
There have been rumors that if the series with Cleveland were closer, maybe that would lead to a return to the floor for Thomas.
 
“No. No way. He’s done [this season],” Danny Ainge, Celtics president of basketball operations, said on 98.5 the Sports Hub’s "Toucher & Rich" show this morning.
 
Ainge said there’s still swelling in the hip, and it probably won’t go down enough for doctors to make a determination whether surgery is needed for another couple weeks.

Thomas was in New York City earlier this week visiting a hip specialist. He's expected to consult with at least two more before making a decision as to what's the best course of treatment.
 
“Everybody agrees if there’s anything that needs to be done to it surgically, it helps...if the inflammation goes down,” Ainge said. “The recovery [time] would be quicker.”
 
The injury initially occurred on March 15 against Minnesota.
 
Ainge said he didn’t become too concerned about it until after Thomas re-aggravated it in Game 6 of the second-round series against Washington and was questionable to play in Game 7.
 
“I was worried going into the Cleveland series that he was nowhere near himself in Game 1 or 2,” Ainge said. “And Game 2 in the second quarter it was clear he was in a lot of pain. No way we could go out and allow him to play the second half.”
 
Boston was blown out 130-86 in Game 2. In the first half, Thomas had two points and six assists, while missing all six of his shots from the field.
 
Ainge said there was “a lot” of irritation and inflammation around the affected joint in Thomas' right hip.
 
“It had gotten worse from the MRIs he had before,” said Ainge, who added that it would have been “irresponsible to allow him to play anymore.”
 

Danny Ainge says Lonzo Ball has declined pre-draft workout with Celtics

Danny Ainge says Lonzo Ball has declined pre-draft workout with Celtics

BOSTON -- Like most NBA executives, Danny Ainge loves to get as much intel on players before picking them as he can.  
 
And with the No. 1 overall pick, Ainge knows he has to do all he can to absolutely get this one right.
 
That’s why any thoughts he had of drafting Lonzo Ball are likely out the window after the talented UCLA guard refused to work out for the Celtics.
 
“We tried to get him in for a workout and he politely said no,” Danny Ainge, Boston’s president of basketball operations, said on 98.5 the Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich show.
 
Lonzo Ball’s desire (or his dad Lavar Ball’s desire; hard to say who in the Ball camp wants him in L.A. the most) to play for the Los Angeles Lakers is one of the worst-kept secrets leading up to next month’s NBA draft.
 
And with the Lakers holding the No. 2 pick in the draft, turning down the Celtics only increases the likelihood of  Boston passing on him and instead drafting University of Washington star Markelle Fultz.
 
“It’s not ideal,” Ainge said of Ball's decision to decline working out for Boston. “Listen, we’ve drafted guys that wouldn’t come in for workouts before. It’s not the end of the world. We’ve watched them play a ton. We have a lot of information on them. Sometimes players don’t want to come in, not because they don’t like you, they see our roster. They think they would prefer to go to another team.”
 
The Celtics, like most teams, have been mum publicly as to who they would take in the draft. But all indications at this point in the process are pointing towards them selecting Fultz with the top overall selection.
 
And the fact that Ball, the projected number two pick even before the draft lottery order was established, refuses to work out for Boston will only increase the likelihood that Fultz will be a Celtic and Ball and his camp will get their wish which has always been to don a Los Angeles Lakers jersey.