Players can see team doctors during lockout

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Players can see team doctors during lockout

By Tom E. Curran
CSNNE.com

Digging into my Boston Globe Sunday, I found a story on Patriots team doctor Thomas Gill. Written by Amalie Benjamin, the story opens with an anecdote about Gill being in his fourth floor office at MGH when he excuses himself from a conversation because "one of the Patriots showed up."Wait, what? I thought team doctors were off-limits during the lockout. So too did the NFLPA - or at least some members of it. The union shuttered its old website when it decertified but stated a new one called NFLLockout.com. And in a March 21 story entitled "What Happens in a Lockout?" one line says, "Players and agents cannot talk to coaches, team PR, team doctors, etc."So I checked with the NFL. Me and whoevercobbled together the "WhatHappens in a Lockout?" story were mistaken. According to NFL spokesman Greg Aiello, players are free to meet with team doctorsas long as it's away from the facility.Team trainers can also glean information about the convalesence of the players from those doctors. So if you're say, Aaron Hernandez coming off hip surgery, you can be at Dr. Gill's office getting checked out. You cannot be inside Gillette Stadium getting your workout on, however.That I had a mistaken perception (six syllables used there instead of the one-word syllable "wrong"), is one thing. That the union is putting the mistaken notion out in their informational bullet points as recently as a week ago is indefensible.As youwere, Dr. Gill. (UPDATE: Commenter Marima asked "What did Dr. Gill do that was indefensible?" After reading my last two sentences, I understand her confusion. Very poorly worded by me. I meant "as you were" in the "keep doing what you're doing, Doc" sense not intending at all to impugn the good Doctor. A round of apologies and barium swallows on me.)

Tom E. Curran can be reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Beyond the numbers: Kings offense will test Celtics defense

Beyond the numbers: Kings offense will test Celtics defense

BOSTON – When it comes to defense, the Celtics are quick to claim that it is indeed the foundation for which their team is built upon. 
 
Still, far too often this season, we have seen cracks in their usually Teflon-tough defense, the kind that ultimately means the difference between winning and losing.
 
The Celtics’ defense will once again need to step up and play well tonight against a Sacramento squad that has shown it can fill it up offensively of late. 
 
Sacramento (7-11) has scored 100 or more points in eight of their past 10 games. In that span, their 107.2 points per game ranks ninth in the league. 
 
In that same span, the Celtics have allowed opponents to score 100.3 points per game, which ranks 10th in the NBA in fewest points allowed.
 
And when it comes to winning, limiting teams to less than 100 points has been huge in Boston’s win total. 
 
The Celtics have held eight opponents to 100 points or less this season. 
 
Their record in those games? 8-0.
 
Within that limited scoring, Boston must also make sure teams don’t get into a nice groove shooting the ball. 
 
Boston is 0-5 this season when an opponent shoots 48 percent or better from the field. 
 
While there are several things Boston must do to be successful, having the right kind of defensive disposition ranks at or near the top of that list in their efforts to play with the kind of defensive success that gave so many hope that this would the year Boston would hold court among the top teams in the Eastern Conference.

“We have to get a little more nastier on the defensive end and not let a team come in and get comfortable,” said Boston’s Jae Crowder.
 

Brady, Bennett, Edelman questionable for Sunday vs. Rams

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Brady, Bennett, Edelman questionable for Sunday vs. Rams

FOXBORO -- The Patriots injury report for Sunday's game with the Rams is out. While they'll be without one big name, but their others are still very much in play. 

Rob Gronkowski, who was scheduled to undergo back surgery on Friday, has been ruled out. Jordan Richards, who is dealing with a knee issue and has not practiced this week, will also be held out of action on Sunday. 

Tom Brady (knee), Julian Edelman (foot), Martellus Bennett (ankle/shoulder) and Chris Hogan (back) -- all of whom practiced on Friday -- have been listed as questionable for the Rams game at Gillette Stadium. Special teamer Nate Ebner (concussion) returned to practice on Friday and is also questionable, as is Trey Flowers (shin) and Elandon Roberts, who popped up on the injury report with a jaw issue Friday. 

Special teams captain Matthew Slater missed Friday's session after participating on both Wednesday and Thursday. He's been ruled as questionable. Defensive lineman Woodrow Hamilton is also questionable after missing his second straight day of practice with an illness.

If Slater and Ebner are at all limited this weekend, coupled with the loss of Richards, the Patriots kicking game would be significantly impacted. Hogan took reps as the team's personal protector on the punt team earlier this week and may fill that role should Ebner miss time.