Doc confirms Hollins to Celtics

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Doc confirms Hollins to Celtics

MILWAUKEE Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers has confirmed that the team has reached an agreement with Ryan Hollins.

Rivers added that he's hopeful that the 7-foot center will be in uniform on Friday when the C's face Atlantic Division rival Philadelphia.

"He has to go through physicals so we have our fingers crossed the way physicals have gone," Rivers said.

The physicals would be performed Friday morning, and Hollins would join up with the team before the Sixers game.

In terms of what impact (if any) Hollins will make on the C's, Rivers said it's too soon to tell.

"He's an athletic big; he can run the floor," Rivers said. "A shot-blocker from the weak side. He does defend well; in the schemes that we run, I think he can show and get back in coverage."

However, Hollins' 2.3 rebounds per game career average has to improve significantly if he is to help the already depleted Celtics' frontcourt that will be without Chris Wilcox (heart condition) and Jermaine O'Neal (wrist) for the remainder of the 2011-2012 season.

"We'll really stress rebounding with him," Rivers said. "But he's just another body that we needed. So we'll take him."

Both Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett played with Hollins during the extended offseason because of the lockout, and have been encouraging the C's to pursue him well before he became available after the Cavaliers waived him on Tuesday.

"They've been talking about him for a while," Rivers said. "But listen. He didn't play in Cleveland for a reason. And I don't know what that reason is. We're just hoping he can help us. And I think he can."

Rivers added, "sometimes it just takes one team to fit; hopefully it's us."

Danny Ainge, Boston's president of basketball operations, is also hopeful that Hollins can eventually become a contributor off the bench.

"I think he would fit in well with what we do," Ainge told CSNNE.com in a phone interview on Thursday.

Bruins sign pair of draft picks, including BC's Fitzgerald, to entry-level deals

Bruins sign pair of draft picks, including BC's Fitzgerald, to entry-level deals

Amidst the current turmoil at the NHL level, the Bruins delivered a little good news about the future today . . . with more potentially to come. 

The Bruins announced the signing of a pair of prospects/former draft picks -- Boston College forward Ryan Fitzgerald and defenseman Emil Johansson -- to entry-level contracts that will kick in next season. There will likely be another wave of signings with the Bruins from the amateur ranks once players like Charlie McAvoy, Anders Bjork and Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson are finished up with their college teams in the NCAA tournament, though it remains to be seen exactly which players end up taking the NHL plunge. 

There was some uncertainty as to whether Fitzgerald would definitely sign with Boston after completing his senior season at BC, but he will immediately join the Providence Bruins on an amateur tryout agreement after signing a two-year deal. Johansson will join the Bruins on a Professional Tryout Agreement with a three-year entry level deal that kicks off next season. 

The 5-foot-10, 177-pound Fitzgerald was an alternate captain for BC in 2016-17, with 12 goals and 19 assists for 31 points in 34 games with 56 penalty minutes and a plus-14 rating. Fitzgerald is also the son of Billerica native and former Bruins forward Tommy Fitzgerald, who took to Twitter on Friday to voice his overwhelming pride over his oldest signing an NHL contract. He was a fourth-round pick by the Bruins in 2013.

Johansson, 20, completed his first season with Djurgardens IF of the Swedish Hockey League in 2016-17, establishing career highs with 7 goals and 10 assists for 17 points with 26 penalty minutes in 49 games. The B's selected him in the seventh round in 2014.

Report: Clippers' Griffin willing to consider Celtics in free agency

Report: Clippers' Griffin willing to consider Celtics in free agency

With all attention focused on overtaking the Cavs for the No. 1 seed in the East, the offseason -- trades, the draft, free agency -- is on the backburner in Celtics Nation these days.

But that pot's still simmering,

And it began to boil a little today when Bleacher Report's Kevin Ding, in the middle of a story on the Clippers being at a crossroad, threw a little accelerant on that old Blake Griffin-to-Boston flame . . .

But more and more people around the league believe he would be open to a fresh start — perhaps with the Lakers or the Boston Celtics, who have coveted Griffin for years and would offer a new chance to win. The most intriguing fit might be if he were to go home to Oklahoma to join Russell Westbrook and the Thunder, but his interests in the entertainment industry make staying in Los Angeles a priority.

Not much of a thread to grab there. But that didn't prevent cbssports.com's James Herbert from looking into it . . .  

Jumping to another contender on a max contract might not be simple. As CelticsBlog’s Keith P. Smith pointed out, Boston would have to dump Terry Rozier, waive Tyler Zeller and renounce all its free agents, including Kelly Olynyk, Jonas Jerebko and Amir Johnson, in order to even get near the amount of cap room that would be required to offer Griffin or someone like Gordon Hayward a max deal. 

Then again, Herbert says the Lakers and Thunder, Griffin's supposed other two destination spots, are even less financially flexible than the C's.

For now, it's all just a temporary diversion from the battle for No. 1.

It's also a reminder, though, that a whole new season -- the offseason -- is just around the corner.