Friday FT's: Rondo playing ball, going back to school?

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Friday FT's: Rondo playing ball, going back to school?

By Jessica Camerato
CSNNE.com Follow @JCameratoNBA
Welcome back to Friday Free Throws, a weekly recap of the most interesting news, notes, and information that may not have made the headlines but are still worth a read.

Want to see Rajon Rondo play basketball this summer?

Now Celtics fans can, thanks to University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari.

Calipari announced on Twitter the Dominican National Team will play against the Kentucky Pro Team on August 15 at Rupp Arena in Lexington, KY.

The Kentucky squad will feature eight former Wildcats currently in the NBA: Rondo,
John Wall, Tayshaun Prince, Eric Bledsoe, DeMarcus Cousins, Jodie Meeks, Nazr Mohammed, and Keith Bogans. They will be coached by Sam Bowie and Joe B. Hall.

The Dominican team, coached by Calipari himself, will have 12 players, including Al Horford, Francisco Garcia, and Charlie Villanueva.

According to Ticketmaster, tickets will go on sale Friday morning. Calipari also tweeted, Last thing. I will tweet the pre-sale passcode for tickets to the Dominican National Team exhibition game on Friday morning at 8 am ET."

And if youre worried about Rondos elbow, he looked pretty comfortable bending it earlier this week.

Rondo could be hitting the books this fall if he isnt hitting the court for the Celtics. On Thursday night Calipari tweeted:

I've heard from a few players that plan to enroll in school for the fall semester & also I'll tell u about my Friday special treat.

John Wall (@jimmywa11), Rajon Rondo (@rajonrondo) & Eric Bledsoe (@ebled24) all plan to enroll in the fall if the lockout continues. Kaboom!

Delonte West in Like a Lion
What do you get Delonte West for his 28th birthday? A lion cake, of course.

The crew at SLAM wrote: When one of Delonte Wests teammates celebrates their born day, he usually designs them a custom cake. So its fitting that today, on his 28th birthday, Wests family surprised him with a personalized cake from Creative Cakes Inc.

Click through the slideshow to check out Wests birthday cake.

Before West celebrated his birthday on Tuesday, he released a video of two songs from his upcoming debut mixtape, Lockout. SLAM had the preview of Its Bout 2 Go Down and Mr. Magnificent.

Shaqs Top Ten

There is always something interesting to find on Shaquille O'Neal's Twitter page, and this week he linked to "Shaq's Celebrity Top Ten Playlist" on YouTube. O'Neal, or rather his own mini-me, previewed his ten favorite videos, ranging from career highlights to pranks caught on tape to moments from his comedy shows. Always the entertainer, he leaves viewers with an extra performance at the end.

Celtics Tweet of the Week
@JaJuanJohnson: "HustleHard"

Birthdays of the Week

Gary Payton, who donned number 20 for the Celtics in the 2004-05 season, turned 43 on July 23 former Celtic-turned-Laker Rick Fox celebrated his 42 on July 24 Nenad Krstic, one of the first NBA players to sign overseas this summer, turned 28 on July 25 Delonte West, the recipient of the unique birthday cake noted above, turned 28 on July 26 Former Celtic Semih Erden, who was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers last season, turned 25 on Thursday.
This Week in NBA History

On July 27, 1993, Reggie Lewis passed away at 27 years old. The Celtics selected Lewis out of Northeastern University with the 22nd overall pick in the 1987 NBA Draft. He averaged 17.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 2.6 assists in six seasons with the Celtics. Dime Magazine compiled a series of commemorative videos looking back on Lewis career.

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter at http:twitter.com!JCameratoNBA.

Bradley still hurting, will miss Celtics game vs. Trail Blazers

Bradley still hurting, will miss Celtics game vs. Trail Blazers

WALTHAM, Mass. – The right Achilles’ strain that has kept Avery Bradley out of five of the Celtics’ past six games, will continue to keep the 6-foot-2 guard sidelined.
 
Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Bradley will not play Saturday against the Portland Trail Blazers.
 
Stevens added that no additional tests have been taken and the Achilles’ itself is structurally fine.
 
“He’s got a lot of soreness around it, and that’s one of those things you have to be ultra-careful with,” said Stevens, who later added that Bradley would not practice with the team today. “When he [Bradley] came back, he said he felt a lot better, and then he played and the next day he practiced. We didn’t do anything live but he did a lot of cutting and did not feel near as good. That’s why he didn’t play Wednesday.”
 
The absence of Bradley was clearly felt in a 117-106 loss to the New York Knicks on Wednesday, a game in which Knicks guard Derrick Rose – the man Bradley would have likely spent defending most of the game – scored 30 points.
 
This season, all-NBA first team defender is  the Celtics’ No. 2 scorer at 17 points per game along with averaging a team-best 6.9 rebounds.
 
In addition, Bradley is shooting a career-best 40.9 percent from 3-point range, as well as dishing out 2.4 assists per game, which also represents a career-high for the 26-year-old.


 

Celtics rookie Jaylen Brown still undecided on All-Star dunk contest

Celtics rookie Jaylen Brown still undecided on All-Star dunk contest

WALTHAM, Mass. – To dunk or not to dunk with the best in the NBA?
 
That is the question Celtics rookie forward Jaylen Brown is grappling with these days.
 
The 6-foot-7 Brown confirmed that he has been invited to be part of the league’s Slam Dunk competition at All-Star weekend, but hasn’t made up his mind as to whether he will participate.
 
Brown said he’ll likely make a decision about it sometime this weekend.
 
While he certainly understands that is indeed an honor for any player to be asked to participate in All-Star weekend, Brown said his trepidation about being part of the slam dunk competition has a lot to do with its potential impact on his body and how that may affect his ability to recharge over the weekend and get ready to finish out his rookie season strong.
 
If he decided to enter the contest, he would be facing some really stiff competition from last year’s winner Zach LaVine of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Orlando’s Aaron Gordon, whose battle last season put their slam dunk competition among the best ever.
 
Facing tough competition is not something that concerns Brown.
 
“I’m not worried about anybody or anything,” Brown said. “I think I have a lot to offer. Just like your rookie year, your body and everything … it’s a lot. All those dunks, they look cool but it takes a toll on your body for sure. I want to put myself in the best position to help the team.”
 
While his focus has been on the Celtics, Brown acknowledged he has been getting a few tips on the competition from teammate Gerald Green, who is also a former Slam Dunk champion.
 
“[Gerald] Green has been coaching me up, giving me a lot of good ideas I wouldn’t have thought on my own,” Brown said. “If I do decide to do it, it’ll be some stuff [nobody] has seen before.”