Artie T.: "I'll be Forever Grateful

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Artie T.: "I'll be Forever Grateful

Market Basket's newly reinstated CEO Arthur T. Demoulas told workers at a Chelsea, Massachusetts, supermarket that he is "forever grateful" Monday, days after he returned to helm the grocery chain following months of worker protests and boycotts triggered by his June ouster.

The man better known to supporters as Artie T. gave workers in Chelsea a lift as they restocked the store. He said the priority now, days after his $1.5 billion deal to buy the company, is to restore stores to customers' expectations, after months hampered by walkouts and empty shelves.

Demoulas reiterated his gratitude to the workers whose pressure helped return him to the helm, and said he is able to connect with his staff of 25,000 through hands-on experience and working together.

"We try to be good to one another and help each other out," Demoulas told workers. "We certainly saw that in the past six or seven weeks.

"I'll be forever grateful," he added.

Demoulas said his first order of business would be to say "thank you, millions of times over."

The turmoil that has roiled Market Basket all summer culminated late last week in Demoulas' deal to buy a majority stake in the company and in his return as CEO, to roars of support from the workers whose intense pressure, protests and walkouts had helped ensure it.

"I love you all," the told them Friday, just after the board controlled by a rival cousin accepted his $1.5 billion bid for a majority stake Thursday night.

Arthur T. had been ousted as CEO back in June by allies of his rival cousin Arthur S. Demoulas, sparking the two-month dispute, in which employee protests and customer boycotts left many stores and shelves empty.

When news broke that he had regained control of the company, hundreds of supporters gathered Friday at company headquarters in Tewksbury, where he spoke to them.

"I've always believed that we are born into this world at a certain time and a certain place to be with certain people for a reason and a purpose," he told the crowd there. "Everyone has a destiny, and because of you, I stand here with a renewed vigor and a sense of purpose."

The restoration of some Market Basket stores could take several weeks, Arthur T. told reporters Friday, but employees have been working around the clock since his reinstatement to restock empty shelves and reestablish ties with vendors.

Customers were found last week ready to shop once again.

“People are bringing in champagne bottles. Customers are bringing in balloons and donuts and food. It’s great. It's a great feeling,” Tewksbury store manager Mike Riley said.

"It's just a good feeling," said customer Cindy Stamp, whose son works in a Market Basket warehouse. "It's about food, but it's really not. It's about what he does for all our children and people that need jobs. I mean, that to me is the biggest. My son makes a living. Do you believe that? A living off of working in a warehouse. Who can say that?"

Photo Credit: NECN

Cink takes leave from PGA tour as wife battles cancer

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Cink takes leave from PGA tour as wife battles cancer

Stewart Cink announces he is stepping away from competitive golf to be with his wife, Lisa, who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer.

Celtics like Butler, but Bulls not making him easy to acquire

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Celtics like Butler, but Bulls not making him easy to acquire

BOSTON – It’s no secret that the Boston Celtics are among the many teams that would love to swing a deal to acquire Chicago’s Jimmy Butler.

Well for now at least, it appears the Bulls aren’t willing to budge off moving their all-star small forward.

A league source tells CSNNE.com that the Bulls, while still open to listening to offers for Butler, are telling teams that are inquiring about his availability that their plan for now is to keep him in the fold.

And while there was some thought that a top-3 pick coupled with a few decent players might be enough to entice the Bulls to pull the trigger on a deal to trade Butler, CSNNE.com has been told such an offer would have to include at least one “legitimate, NBA starter” for the Bulls to even possibly consider trading him.

“And that might be a stretch,” the source indicated.

Any deal involving Butler to Boston from Chicago’s perspective, would most likely have to include Jae Crowder who is one of the best bargains in the NBA – and will be so for years to come.

With the increased salary cap on the horizon this summer for teams, the five-year, $35 million deal Crowder signed last summer is looking like an absolute steal on the Celtics’ part.

Meanwhile, Butler just completed the first year of a five-year, $92.3 million contract which raises questions if you’re the Celtics as to whether the difference in their salaries makes doing such a deal worth it.

If you’re the Celtics, such a deal would be a significant bump in paid-out salaries but it would also better position Boston to acquire a second superstar a la Kevin Durant who will be a free agent this summer.

There are a number of options for the Celtics to consider in their current rebuilding process, with one possibility being to fall back on the ‘07 “blueprint for success.”

Boston used the No. 5 overall pick (Jeff Green) as part of a trade with Seattle (now Oklahoma City) that helped the Celtics land Ray Allen.

A couple of months later, Boston was able to engineer a trade for Kevin Garnett who played for Minnesota at the time.

And the rest was Banner 17 history.

Without acquiring Allen, there was no way the Celtics were going to land Garnett.

And if the goal for the Celtics is to catapult itself to being a title contender sooner rather than later, they’re going to have to acquire an elite, all-star caliber talent before they have a serious shot at Durant.

Could Butler be this year’s Ray Allen?

At this point, the Bulls have no intention of allowing that to happen.

More likely than not, the Celtics will have to go in a different direction which may result in Boston pulling off a deal for Sacramento’s DeMarcus Cousins.

Like the Bulls, the Kings are saying all the right things now about not wanting to trade him.

Pastrnak, Marchand and Vatrano represent Bruins at World Championship

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Pastrnak, Marchand and Vatrano represent Bruins at World Championship

The Bruins have three players headed to the IIHF Hockey World Championship, which begin this weekend in Russia.

Brad Marchand was invited to play for Team Canada early on in the process, coming off his 37-goal season for the Bruins. Last week the Czech Republic added 19-year-old right wing David Pastrnak to their squad with plans to skate on a line with the Montreal Canadiens' Tomas Plekanec.

And Frank Vatrano -- who scored a total of 44 goals between Boston and Providence in this, his first full professional season -- was added to the Team USA roster this week. Vatrano, 22, confirmed it on his own Twitter account on Tuesday night prior to hopping on a flight bound for Russia:

Torey Krug played for Team USA last season, but was unavailable this time around after undergoing right shoulder surgery just a couple of weeks ago that will have him sidelined until late October. 

Vatrano is one of four Massachusetts players on this year's version of Team USA. The others are Canadiens goaltender Mike Condon, Hurricanes defenseman Noah Hanifin and Devils D-man David Warsofsky.

Both Marchand and Pastrnak previously suited up for their countries in the World Junior championships, and Vatrano played in the U.S. National Team Development Program prior to playing college hockey at the University of Massachusetts. Vatrano also previously represented the U.S. at the 2012 IIHF Under-18 Men's World Championship in Brno and Znojmo, Czech Republic, where he helped Team USA claim the gold medal.

The IIHF Men's World Championships will start Friday and run until May 22 in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia. It features featuring many of the NHL players that aren’t participating in the Stanley Cup playoffs.