West hopes to help others during suspension


West hopes to help others during suspension

By Jessica Camerato

For most of the Celtics, the NBA season will officially kick off next Tuesday night.

Delonte West, though, will have to wait a little longer.

Before West can take the court, he must serve a 10-game suspension for weapons charges stemming from last year. Now he is determined to use his situation to benefit others.

West hopes to invite a group of deserving children to the teams practice facility in Waltham to watch the Celtics battle the Miami Heat on television.

Maybe award some children that have good grades or kids from troubled situations trying to do the right thing, he said. Its not all negatives about missing games.

For West, its not the number of games that bother him. A player can be sidelined longer than that with a sprained finger, he says. Its the small moments that matter most to him. Given that he cannot be in the TD Garden two hours before game time, he will miss those first small moments of the regular season.

Taking the floor for the first time with the team or just being in that first huddle, to hear what Doc (Rivers) has to say before a game or after a game, those things are very important, he said. That develops chemistry and those things that you miss out on, those are things Im going to miss.

West already missed five of the teams eight preseason games with nagging injuries. After suffering what he thought was back spasms, he learned it was actually pain in his glute muscles. West has not played since October 10 and is looking forward to getting back out there at full strength. He expects to practice this week.

It was kind of preventing me from playing the type of game I like to play -- hard-nosed, get up, and energetic, he said. Those are things I bring to the floor that the spasms were preventing me from doing.

Even though West has been sidelined with injuries (and will be for the first ten games with a suspension) he isnt worried about having chemistry with his teammates when he returns to the floor. He is in his second stint with the Celtics and has transitioned back into the system after being away from the team for three years.

Guys know what each other can do. Were like brothers, he said. Were around each other all day, every day. When youre not on the court, youre still around each other somehow. I dont think 10 games is enough time to really fall out the loop of things.

West notes that he will feel isolated from the teammates, the group of players he badly wants to see succeed, during his suspension.

A lot of things have been thrown my way over the last year so nothing really surprises me, he said. Its going to be tough in the sense that I wont be out there helping my team.

But if Wests vision becomes a reality, he will be able to use this time to help others on Opening Night.

Report: Pacers decide not to trade Paul George


Report: Pacers decide not to trade Paul George

Well, so much for that . . . 

Of couse, is this is true, the breakdown of talks isn't such a bad thing:

More to come . . . 

Avery Bradley returns to practice, but injury status remains uncertain

Avery Bradley returns to practice, but injury status remains uncertain

Avery Bradley was back on the practice floor after missing the Celtics' past 16 games, but it's unclear if he'll travel to Toronto for Friday night's game.

Boston Celtics, Avery Bradley, Jaylen Brown, Brad Stevens, Toronto Raptors, A. Sherrod Blakely 
WALTHAM, Mass. – Avery Bradley was back on the practice floor briefly at the first gathering of the Celtics since the All-Star break.
Now returning to the floor in an actual game? That remains a bit up in the air.
Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Bradley practiced in a limited fashion on Thursday, adding that his status for the Friday night game at Toronto remains unclear.
“Avery practiced about a third of the practice today which was about what our medical staff determined was the appropriate progression,” Stevens said. “He [Bradley] told me afterwards he felt really good.”
As far as his availability for Friday, Stevens said he did not have an update and was not told by the medical staff whether Bradley would be traveling with the team to Toronto when they leave later this afternoon.
Bradley is dealing with a right Achilles' injury that has kept him sidelined for the past 16 games and 20 of the past 21.
The news is much better when it comes to the health of Jaylen Brown.
Brown missed the past three games, but said he was feeling better and would be traveling with the team to Toronto.
“I’m looking to play in Toronto,” he said.
The return of Brown can only help a Celtics team that’s looking to pick up where they left off prior to the break.
Boston’s ascension to the No. 2 spot in the East has been fueled by wins in 11 of the past 13 games.
Despite that success, Stevens knows all too well that a roster change of some sort could go down at any minute prior to today’s 3 p.m . trade deadline.
“When you’re in position where you’re playing at a pretty good level, you don’t anticipate much change,” Stevens said. “But certainly there could be small things; there may not be. At the end of the day, my job is to try and focus on the 15 guys that are here.”