Celtics get a visit from Hall of Famer Havliceck


Celtics get a visit from Hall of Famer Havliceck

By A.Sherrod Blakely

WALTHAM The Boston Celtics are in a 2-0 series hole to the Miami Heat.

The only time a Celtics team has rallied from such a deficit to win a series was in 1969, a team that featured Hall of Famer John Havlicek . . . who just so happened to be at the Celtics practice facility on Thursday.


"John shows up when he thinks we need him," quipped coach Doc Rivers. "John just shows up. He's great. I love having him around."

Coincidence or not, his timing could not be better.

While the Celtics continue to maintain that they are confident that they can get back into their Eastern Conference semifinal matchup with Miami, it can only help to hear words of encouragement from a Celtics legend who has actually been there and done that.

"I love when all those guys come around," Rivers said. "Hell, I wish they'd come to every practice. I just think they got more stories, more truthful stories . . . " and with a glance towards the championship banners that hang on the walls, Rivers added, "and the history is above them. It's always good when they (Celtics legends) come around."

The 1969 Celtics trailed the Los Angeles Lakers 2-0 in the NBA Finals. After losing both road games, the Celtics returned home to win Games 3 and 4. They lost Game 5 in Los Angeles, and bounced back to win Game 6 in Boston and closed out the series with a 108-106 Game 7 win in Los Angeles.

The game-winning basket in Game 7 was scored by former Golden State Warriors coach Don Nelson.

"We always felt that if we could just get healthy, we could beat anybody we played," Nelson told CSNNE.com.

Here we are, 42 years later, and some things remain the same.

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

Celtics sign former Laker second-rounder Ryan Kelly

Celtics sign former Laker second-rounder Ryan Kelly

BOSTON – The Boston Celtics made one more roster move on Friday, but not the one many were anticipating.

Instead of trimming the training camp roster down to 15 players, the Celtics expanded it by signing Ryan Kelly.

The 6-foot-11 forward appeared in six games for the Atlanta Hawks during the preseason, averaging 4.8 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game.

A former second round pick of the Los Angeles Lakers in 2013, Kelly has appeared in 147 games with career averages of 6.5 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game.

Boston already has a stacked roster at the power forward/center position, which is why they decided to waive second round pick and former Providence College star Ben Bentil earlier on Friday.

The addition of Kelly, on the surface at least, doesn't make a lot of sense.

But the Celtics are trying to build a team for the present while keeping an eye on the future.

When the Celtics waived Bentil, they did so with the knowledge that he was unlikely to sign with their Development League affiliate, the Maine Red Claws.

But with Kelly, the veteran big man will likely wind up with the Red Claws which will allow the Celtics to get a closer look at him without impacting their roster status which is currently at 16, one above the league-maximum.

The final roster spot will come down to James Young and R.J. Hunter. The Celtics have until 5 p.m. Monday to make a decision, a decision that team officials have repeatedly said in recent days will come down to the wire.