Passive aggressive Bobby V.

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Passive aggressive Bobby V.

To this point in the season, I'd say I've been a pretty consistent Bobby Valentine apologist. It's not that I think the guy is void of criticism, but more that there are some people around here who get off a little too much on picking apart his style.

On one hand, I get: The guy has a pretty specific reputation, and certainly showed some signs of being the same old Bobby V this winter. But on the other, it's been a decade since he's managed in the big leagues. I figure he at least deserves a chance to show what he can do in the regular season before we tie him up and ship him off to sea with Grady Little and Joe Kerrigan.

So yeah, that's where I stand. But I'll admit that once in a while, stuff comes out of his mouth that I just don't understand. Stuff that makes me realize why some believe that is tenure is already a sinking ship.

For instance, yesterday afternoon, when Valentine was asked about Josh Beckett's trip to the doctor.

I heard if he needed to talk to me he was going to talk to me, Valentine said. So he didnt talk to me, so hes fine. I think he was fine.

Come on now, Bobby! That's ridiculous. All that kind of passive aggressive talk does is set yourself up for disaster. I mean, if you haven't heard, then you haven't heard. But to suggest that it's Beckett's responsibility to provide you with this information, and then assume that if he didn't, then everything must be fine? That's dangerous.

Because what happens if he's really not OK?

Why put your relationship with Beckett on the line like?

What's the point?

That's what I'd like to find out. But in the meantime, I'll return you to your regularly scheduled helping of Bobby Valentine apologies.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Highlights: Devin Booker puts up 70 points but Celtics get the win

Highlights: Devin Booker puts up 70 points but Celtics get the win

Highlights from the TD Garden as Devin Booker had a historic performance where he scored 70 points, but it wasn't enough to get the win over the Celtics.

Thomas on Suns: 'We’re worried about the playoffs; they’re worried about the lottery'

Thomas on Suns: 'We’re worried about the playoffs; they’re worried about the lottery'

BOSTON – Stacking wins on top of wins is the mindset of the Boston Celtics right now, so the players who did speak to the media following Friday’s 130-120 win over Phoenix drove that point home emphatically.

But inside the locker room, it was unusually quiet, the kind of silence you expect following a loss.

Considering how the Celtics’ defense was absolutely thrashed by Devin Booker’s franchise record 70 points, there’s no question at a minimum the Celtics’ pride overall was stung.

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And when Suns coach Earl Watson began calling time-outs and having his team commit fouls at the end of the game, there’s no question it rubbed a few Celtics the wrong way.

“I don’t think anybody has ever seen that; continuing to call time-outs, continuing to foul when we are up 15. But I mean, it was obvious what they were trying to do. They were trying to get him (Booker) the most points possible. Hat off to to him (Booker). He played a hell of a game.”

Following the game, Watson defended his late-game decision making.

“Calling time-outs at the end kept the game close,” he said. “It’s basketball; I’m not coming to any arena to be liked. If people don’t like us while we build … so what? Do something about it.”

The Suns (22-51) never came any closer than 10 points, which was the final score margin.

Al Horford acknowledged that there was some aggravation following the game.

“You can be frustrated when somebody is doing that to you,” he said. “It’s not to one guy, it’s to the team so I think we’re probably more aggravated at ourselves, at least personally I feel that way. I probably could have done a little better, maybe done some different things to prevent it. We got to give him credit, 70 points, I don’t care it’s 70, he got 70. It’s impressive.”

But there will be some inside the Celtics locker room and among their fan base, who were bothered by the Suns’ late-game actions which seemed more focused on Booker getting numbers than anything else.

When asked about being disrespected by the Suns’ late-game strategy, Thomas wanted no part of that conversation.

“It is what it is,” Thomas said. “We won the game. We’re worried about the playoffs; they’re worried about the lottery.”

 Boom!