Celtics continue to shop around for a backup SF


Celtics continue to shop around for a backup SF

By A.Sherrod Blakely

SAN FRANCISCO - The Boston Celtics are still gathering information on the best course of action in treating Marquis Daniels and his bruised spinal cord injury.

As much as the C's would love to have him back this season, the chances of that happening becomes more slim with each passing day.

"There is a chance that he will miss the season and may need surgery to resume his playing career," Danny Ainge, Boston's president of basketball operations, told CSNNE.com Wednesday night. "We're still gathering information, but that's where we're at."

That's why the Celtics have been working the phones so diligently in search of a backup small forward to replace Daniels in the rotation.

When he suffered the injury a couple weeks ago against Orlando, the initial prognosis was that he would return to action in a month or two.

While Daniels has shown improvement, the C's want to do all they can to make sure they are as informed as possible as to the best ways to treat him, with the goal being to ensure, as best they can, that he doesn't suffer a similar injury in the future.

Daniels' status has in a sense, made the days leading up to Thursday's 3 p.m. EST trading deadline pretty cut and dry for the Celtics.

They need a backup small forward.

End of discussion.

Ainge acknowledged as much on Wednesday, adding that he has had talks with a number of teams.

"Right now, we're just kind of waiting, listening to what other teams have to say, fielding calls and just kind of going from there," Ainge said.

Several names have been linked with the Celtics as possible players they would pursue.

Ainge wouldn't get into specifics, but it's clear he has a list of players that he feels comfortable with bringing on as Celtics.

"We don't have a lot of assets to trade," Ainge told CSNNE.com. "So whoever we get, it'll be a good player who can help us, but it's not going to be a great, superstar player or anything like that."

Some of the more talked-about names include Cleveland's Anthony Parker, Los Angeles Clippers forward Rasual Butler and Indiana's Dahntay Jones. The Celtics are also hopeful that if a trade doesn't work out, they might be able to add a player who receives a buyout. Two of the more talked-about options along those lines are Detroit's Richard Hamilton and Troy Murphy, who was recently traded from New Jersey to Golden State. The Warriors are expected to buy Murphy out.

The C's suffered yet another blow to one of their big men when an MRI taken Wednesday morning revealed that he had a strained MCL in his left knee. Ainge said Perkins would not play in the remaining three games on Boston's West coast trip.

"But he should be good to go right after the team gets back," Ainge said.

Perkins' injury, Ainge said, has no impact on how he and the C's will proceed with trade talks.

"No, Perk's going to be fine," Ainge said. "He's only going to be out for like a week, so it's not like we have to do anything drastic. We just have to find a way to get through the two or three games, that's all. At some point, we're going to get most or all of our bigs healthy."

If the C's don't make a trade or add a player via buy-out, Ainge is still confident that the Celtics will be among the last teams standing when all is said and done.

Right now, Delonte West and Von Wafer will be counted on to fill that backup small forward position.

"Delonte played great defense against Golden State on Tuesday," Ainge said. "And Von Wafer has really been coming on for us lately. He can play some 3 small forward as well."

Ainge reiterated that the C's will not make a deal simply for the sake of hogging up a line on the transactions wire.

"I want to only do good deals," quipped Ainge. "We won't do a deal out of panic. That's not going to happen. There's a lot of good NBA players. We'll be OK."

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached atsblakely@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn

Celtics break ground on new practice facility


Celtics break ground on new practice facility

BRIGHTON, Mass. -- When it comes to finding ways to attract the best talent, colleges and universities often seek to upgrade their training facilities as an enticement to prospective players.
So why should it be any different at the pro level?
The Boston Celtics had a groundbreaking ceremony Monday morning for The Auerbach Center at New Balance Headquarters.
“When you think he was hired in 1966 and they’re still honoring him, it’s very humbling,” said Randy Auerbach, Red’s daughter.
New Balance officials echoed similar sentiments about the legendary Red Auerbach, the architect of arguably the greatest dynasty in professional basketball.
“Red Auerbach was a true entrepreneur whose passion for winning and dedication to the sport of basketball and the Boston Celtics was equally matched with his commitment to people and his local community,” said Jim Davis, Chairman and Owner at New Balance.  “New Balance is extremely proud to join with the Boston Celtics in honoring his professional achievements and personal values through ‘Red’s House’ at our Boston world headquarters.”
Celtics president Rich Gotham cited several benefits to moving the team to a state-of-the-art practice facility closer to Boston.
Among the reasons given was the potential for the practice facility to be a potential enticement for free agents.
“Players spend more time in the practice facility than they do in the arena they play in certainly, and maybe more than they do at home,” Gotham said. “So having a place where they feel comfortable, a place where they want to spend time to improve themselves across the board … it’s all coming together in a pretty big way. The best players know it’s integral to their success that make sure that support is there, that infrastructure is there. So when we’re out talking to a player, we’re going to be talking about this practice facility we’re building. Because we do think it’s an important part of our story.”
Some of the features of the new practice facility will include:
·  Two state-of-the-art parquet floor basketball courts where the team will practice
·  Leading edge audio-visual technology throughout the facility
·  Expanded strength and conditioning, training, and recovery facilities
·  Best-in-class locker rooms and players’ lounge
·  Physical therapy areas including hydrotherapy pools
·  Sports science and nutrition facilities
·  Expanded media work room, press conference and broadcast facilities
·  A flexible hospitality area designed for community relations activities, partner gatherings and other guest events
·  Work space for the team’s coaching and basketball front office staffs
While the facility will have all the bells and whistles you would come to expect in a new facility, Gotham said there will be a balance of sorts struck between that and the franchise’s longstanding history.
“What will be clear is it will be … at that intersection of, which is a strange intersection, of innovation but honoring our tradition,” Gotham said. “This will be a building that’s state-of-the-art, moving forward. But at the same time, I think one of the things we’re lucky to have is this treasure trove of great guys who came before us who left great wisdom and great quotes. You can see a lot of that built in. Coach Stevens is big on having motivational phrases around for the guys to see every single day when they come in for practice. If those come from Red Auerbach and Bill Russell, all the better. You’ll see us incorporating those kind of things.”   

Celtics waive R.J. Hunter as James Young makes roster


Celtics waive R.J. Hunter as James Young makes roster

BOSTON – One way or another, R.J. Hunter or James Young was not going to be a Boston Celtic by the end of the day Monday.
The Celtics made their choice by waiving Hunter just hours before the NBA deadline to trim their roster down to 15 players.
Hunter began to show signs of coming around near the end of training camp, but his improved play would eventually be too little too late.

This is certainly good news for Young, who like Hunter, made it clear that he wanted to remain with the Celtics. But it by no means should be seen as a victory for Young who is entering his third NBA season.
The 21-year-old is now part of the 15-man roster, but it still doesn’t address the issue of him playing better to where the Celtics might actually use him with some degree of regularity.
If not for Kelly Olynyk’s shoulder injury, which will keep him out of action until next month, there was a decent chance that Young would begin the season on the inactive roster. But to Young’s credit, he showed a level of dedication to the game that the Celtics had not seen before. He spent most of this past summer in Boston working on his game, trying to get physically stronger. During the preseason, his level of commitment to improving was noticeable as well.
And when he did get a chance to play in the preseason, he did a lot of little things really well, showing the kind of improvement that ultimately put him a leg up on Hunter whom the Celtics drafted last year with the 28th overall pick.
If Hunter isn’t claimed, he becomes an unrestricted free agent who can then sign with any team of his choosing. Do not be surprised if Hunter is claimed off waivers by a team which then assigns him to their Development League affiliate, similar to what the Celtics did with Ryan Kelly over the weekend.