Leon Powe waived by Cavs, open to Celtics return

191544.jpg

Leon Powe waived by Cavs, open to Celtics return

By JessicaCamerato
CSNNE.com

As the Celtics dealt away Kendrick Perkins and Semih Erden on the trade deadline, another big man became available on the free-agent market.

Former Celtic Leon Powe was waived by the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday, ending his two-year stint with the team. Powe appeared in just 34 games for the Cavs since signing with the team in 2009.

Now he is looking to help another organization win, just as he did with the Celtics in 2008. While Powe is exploring all of his options as a free agent, he would be open to returning to the Cs.

"Ill be happy wherever I end up, but Boston is always holding a special place in my heart," Powe told CSNNE.com on Thursday evening. "The fans were so good to me, everybody up there was so nice, and it would be a great thing to return back to the Celtics if I could."

Powe, a 6-foot-8, 240-pound forward, is a player the Celtics may have interest in reaching out to as they fill out their roster, with two spots currently available.

The Celtics traded five players on Thursday and acquired Jeff Green and Nenad Krstic from the Oklahoma City Thunder. They also signed Chris Johnson (Dakota Wizards, NBA Development League) to a 10-day contract. The Celtics are still, however, without the injured Jermaine ONeal and Shaquille ONeal.

Powe believes he can be a contributor on any team looking to win it all.

"I love to play defense," he said. "I can get some scoring, rebounding, and some extra toughness. Thats my type of game. I think every team could use that, but well see what happens from here on out."

In his three years with the Cs, he was known for his hustle, defensive-focus, and "do-whatever-it-takes-to-win" mentality. Even though Powe was part of a losing team this season, he has not lost his winning attitude. He stresses the importance of cherishing the moment and putting his best foot forward every game.

"I think I can help a team reach their goals and try to win a championship," he said. "I think thatd be a good fit for me because I dont have to play 40, 45 minutes. If I needed to I could, but I dont have to do that. I can come in, fill in some spots, and just be solid. Im just looking for that opportunity to try to get that done."

As Powe awaits to see where the remainder of the season will take him, he is thankful for all of the encouragement and support he receives. He may have left Boston in 2009, but he is still very much on the minds of Celtics fans.

"They still support me and appreciate what I did back then, helping the team out, being a good sport, doing good community work, never complaining," he said. "I think they appreciate that and the hard work, and I really appreciate them too."

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter athttp:twitter.comjcameratoNBA

Stars, studs and duds: Celtics put on defensive clinic in second half

Stars, studs and duds: Celtics put on defensive clinic in second half

This season the Boston Celtics have shown flashes for a few minutes here and there that they were an elite team defensively. 
 
But what they did in the second half to the Orlando?
 
Boston (13-9) put on a defensive clinic that overwhelmed the Magic on every level imaginable as the Celtics cruised to a 117-87 thumping of Orlando.
 
Celtics head coach Brad Stevens has been even-keeled when it comes to discussing his team’s play, win or lose. 
 
But even he couldn’t contain how pleased he was to see the way his players defended in the third and fourth quarters. 
 
“On defense, the second half was as good as we’ve guarded all year,” Stevens told reporters afterwards. “Really focused, really urgent. I felt good about that.”
 
Setting the tone for the Celtics was Avery Bradley who certainly was impressive with his scoring. 
 
But as much as he knew the team would need a boost offensively with Isaiah Thomas (right groin) out, that wasn’t his approach to the game. 
 
“I had a defensive mindset coming into tonight’s game,” Bradley told CSN’s Abby Chin following the win. “Just trying to get my teammates to playing the right way so we could come out and get the ‘W’ tonight. I’m happy with how all the guys played. We all played hard, and we played as a team.”
 
Here are the Stars, Studs and Duds from Wednesday night’s game.
 

STARS
 
Avery Bradley

Bradley picked up the scoring with Isaiah Thomas (right groin) out for Wednesday, leading the team with a game-high 23 points to go with four rebounds and three assists.
 
 
STUDS

Jaylen Brown

Arguably the biggest spark off the bench for Boston, Brown had one of his best games as a Celtic. He finished with 13 points which included a dunk over Nikola Vucevic that quieted the Amway Center crowd and just as important, provided a nice energy boost for Boston.
 
D.J. Augustin

He had the hot hand at the end of the second quarter, but was a non-factor in the second half as Augustin finished with 15 points – all of which came in the first half. 
 
Terry Rozier

This was a great confidence-booster for Rozier as well as his teammates to see him have a big game and make the most of his increased opportunity to play. He finished with a career-high 16 points off the Celtics bench on 6-for-13 shooting with five rebounds.
 
Nikola Vucevic

It doesn’t matter if he starts or comes off the bench. Vucevic is always a double-double threat on the floor. He finished with 12 points off the bench along with 10 rebounds for his 13th double-double this season. 
 

DUDS
 
Orlando second half defense

The Celtics got pretty much whatever they wanted, when they wanted it in the second half against the Magic defense which pulled a major disappearing act. Boston shot 61 percent from the field in the second half, and 45.4 percent from 3-point range. 
 

Bradley steps up to lead Celtics to 117-87 blowout win over Magic

Bradley steps up to lead Celtics to 117-87 blowout win over Magic

It was one of Tacoma, Washington’s finest carrying the scoring load most of Wednesday night for the Boston Celtics. 
 
But it wasn’t the Celtics’ leading scorer, Isaiah Thomas. 
 
It was his backcourt mate and fellow Tacoma, Wash. native Avery Bradley picking up the slack in Thomas’ absence as Boston pulled away in the second half for a 117-87 blowout win over the Orlando Magic. 
 
Wednesday’s victory was Boston’s first in Orlando since Nov. 8, 2013. 
 
Bradley led seven double-figure scorers for Boston (13-9), with a team-high 23 points.
 
Thomas missed his first game of the season with a right groin injury that will sideline him for a yet-to-be-determined period of time. 
 
The 5-foot-9 guard ranks among the NBA’s leaders in scoring (26.0) in addition to leading the Celtics in assists (6.2) per game. 
 
But Bradley was up to the challenge of filling the void left by Thomas, which isn’t all that surprising when you consider the game was away from the TD Garden. 
 
Bradley has been good this year, but has really stood out in road games where he has averaged 19.0 points on 51.4 percent shooting from the field compared to 15.8 points on 41.3 percent shooting at the TD Garden. 
 
The first half was a tightly contested game with neither team leading by more than eight points. 
 
After Orlando scored the first basket of the third quarter, the Celtics went on a furious 18-2 run to lead 67-54 which had five different scorers for Boston that spoke volumes about the balanced offensive attack the Celtics came with to make up for Thomas’ absence. 
 
Boston’s defense picked up its intensity in the second half, but just as important was the renewed emphasis on ball movement that was simple, crisp and highly effective. 
 
And it came against an Orlando team that came in having won four of its last five games – all on the road – which included beating the always-challenging San Antonio Spurs on their home floor. 
 
But as important as it was for Bradley to help fill the enormous scoring void that exists without Thomas, Boston also needed a strong game from their bench. 
 
That’s exactly what they got, and it wasn’t just one or two guys, either. 
 
Jaylen Brown had arguably the best game of his still-young NBA career coming off the Celtics bench, finishing with 13 points which included a powerful, rim-rattling dunk over Orlando’s Nikola Vucevic
 
Boston also got great play out of Terry Rozier (career-high 16 points, five rebounds) who saw a few more minutes than usual because of Thomas’ injury. 
 
Not only was the victory important to pad the win total, but it also provides a nice boost of confidence for the Celtics as they hit what will be arguably the most difficult stretch of the season in terms of quality opponents. 
 
The Celtics have 12 games remaining this month, with the teams having a combined record of 152-105, or a winning percentage of .591.