See which star player is likely done for 2012

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See which star player is likely done for 2012

From Comcast SportsNetFLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) -- The NFL's top shutdown cornerback will likely be shut down for the season.Darrelle Revis has a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee that will require surgery, a huge blow for the New York Jets that leaves coach Rex Ryan without his best defensive player.A somber Ryan stopped short of ruling Revis out for the season on Monday, saying he just learned of the MRI results. But Revis will have to wait two or three weeks before surgery, Ryan said, and the recovery from an ACL tear is usually six-to-nine months. So the chances of Revis returning this season appear extremely slim.Ryan added that he will speak with Revis before the team decides whether he will be placed on injured reserve, a move that could happen as early as Tuesday."It's just disappointing," Ryan said. "This guy wants to win. As great a player as he is individually, he's a great teammate and just wants to win. That's why he was so excited about this year."The 27-year-old Revis was injured in the third quarter of the Jets' 23-20 overtime victory at Miami on Sunday, falling awkwardly and grabbing his knee even before he hit the grass. It was a non-contact injury, and he covered his face with gloved hands in obvious pain. He was able to walk off the field, but was taken into the locker room on a golf cart."Thanks for all the support!" Revis wrote on his Twitter page on Monday night. "It's just part of the game, I'm already on my way to recover!"Ryan suspected the injury was serious when he talked to Revis on the plane ride home. MRI results Monday morning confirmed the team's worst fears."It's something we have to overcome as a football team. ... We're going to lose that presence. I don't know what else to say about it," Ryan said. "I guess that's the horrible thing that came out of the game."This was Revis' first game after missing a week with a concussion sustained in the season opener against Buffalo. He had missed only three games before this season, all in 2010."I know the way Darrelle is that this is a guy who's as competitive as it gets, and I don't think there's any doubt that he's going to come back strong from it," Ryan said.The Jets will be without perhaps the NFL's top cornerback on a defense Ryan had considered his best since the coach came to New York. Kyle Wilson, the team's first-round draft pick in 2010, will step into Revis' starting role opposite Antonio Cromartie. Ellis Lankster will take Wilson's spot as the nickelback."I just feel like I'm going to go out there and I'm going to continue to do my job," Wilson said. "Go out there, make plays and have fun. Just play my game, that's all I can do."Wilson, who has trained in the offseason with Revis the last two summers, will continue to talk to him and get tips and suggestions throughout the season."I always pick that guy's brain," Wilson said. "He's obviously pretty good."While Wilson hasn't yet lived up to expectations, and the drop-off from Revis is great, the Jets still have two first-rounders starting at the position."Most teams have just one No. 1 corner, and some teams don't even have any," Ryan said. "We're fortunate that we have the best in the league in Darrelle, and a No. 1 corner in Cromartie. We're fortunate there. We drafted Kyle Wilson to basically be a No. 2 corner, and that's what he's going to play, that role, and I'm confident in Kyle."Ryan insists he isn't panicking despite losing the three-time All-Pro cornerback."It never happens," he said. "We have enough to get it done here. ... We'll find a way to get this done."Ryan also didn't rule out signing a free agent. The Jets released defensive lineman Marcus Dixon on Monday, and Ryan said the move was made in part so the team could pursue other players -- such as bringing back linebacker Bryan Thomas. Rookie wide receiver Stephen Hill has a hamstring injury that could sideline him a week, so the Jets re-signed Patrick Turner."It's an onus on the whole defense," linebacker Aaron Maybin said of losing Revis. "We know that we all have to step up, and on offense and special teams. It's going to be a collective effort because when you have a guy like that go down, it really does affect the whole team."The Jets, despite their mistake-filled win at Miami, are in first place in the AFC East at 2-1, holding the tiebreaker over Buffalo. But tough home games against San Francisco and Houston are up next."This is a team game, and as a team, we've got to step it up," Ryan said. "I think we'll respond. ... Is it a major blow when you lose a great player like Darrelle Revis? Of course, it absolutely is. But this is a football team, and I think we showed that yesterday, too."The injury further clouds the contract status of Revis, who reported for training camp in July despite saying he was unsure if he would because he was hoping the Jets would rework the 46 million, four-year deal he signed in 2010. He is set to earn 13.5 million during the next two years after the deal -- reached after a 36-day holdout in 2010 -- was front-loaded with 32.5 million in the first two years.But after not getting a new deal this offseason, many thought Revis and the team would re-visit the matter after this season. If he doesn't have a new contract by training camp next summer, he could become a free agent after the 2013 season."Yeah, I want to be a Jet for life," Revis said in July. "If management don't see fit (to) that, then I have to move on."NOTES:LB Calvin Pace clarified his postgame comments about Dolphins RB Reggie Bush when he said the Jets "had to put him on out." Bush injured his left knee Sunday, but should be fine. "I wasn't trying to say it as if we were trying to hurt him," Pace said Monday. "I'm sad to see him get hurt. We aren't running any kind of bounty system or anything like that, and actually, looking at the play, somebody just fell on his knee. That's all I have to say. I guess I need to say things in a different manner, and I'll do a better job of it next time." ... Through three games, the Jets have just three sacks: two by linebacker Garrett McIntyre and one by nose tackle Sione Po'uha.

Blakely: Bradley not letting trade rumors get to him

Blakely: Bradley not letting trade rumors get to him

WALTHAM, Mass. – No matter what Mother Nature is doing weather-wise, Boston Celtics guard Avery Bradley has been around the NBA long enough to know that the potential to be traded is always in season.

This summer has been no different, with Bradley being among the Boston players whose name has been included in several rumored trades.

“I try not to worry about it too much because it’s out of my control at the end of the day,” Bradley said after his basketball camp at Brandeis University with additional camps in Trinadad having been completed with additional ones this summer in Tacoma, Washington and Vancouver.

Bradley is entering the final year of the 4-year, $32 million deal he signed in 2014.

And make no mistake about it.

Bradley is going to get paid a lot, whether it’s by the Celtics or another team.

His steady improvement from one year to the next has been a constant for the 26-year-old who last season was named to the NBA’s all-Defensive first team.

But he knows the Celtics’ brass well enough that if they see a chance to significantly upgrade the roster, they won’t hesitate to trade anyone, himself included.

“I don’t worry about it,” Bradley said. “I know that was the case and I get traded, the Celtics are going to do what’s best for them and I’m going to have to do what’s best for me if I’m put in a different situation.

He added, “our job is to play basketball, not worry about trades. I just try to focus on that.”

Having been in the NBA for seven years, Bradley acknowledged it does get easier to put the trade speculation in perspective over time.

“It’s part of the business, man,” he said. “You just to accept and understand that your name is going to be thrown in trade talk. You can get traded at any time. You just have to be prepared and focus on just being the best player that you can be.”

That approach has been critical to Bradley’s steady improvement as an NBA player who began his career as someone who was charged with playing elite defense, into one of the better two-way talents in the league.

Last season, Bradley averaged a career-high 16.3 points per game along with 6.1 rebounds which was also a career-high.

This season, Bradley has a long list of areas he wants to improve upon, with finishing at the rim near the top of the list.

Looking at his track record, you can count on that area of his game showing noticeable improvement.

And whether it’ll manifest itself while he’s a Celtic, remains to be seen.

“It doesn’t matter if you get traded or where you end up,” Bradley said. “If you’re prepared to be in any situation you’ll be fine.”

With draft drama behind them, Celtics move on to free agency

With draft drama behind them, Celtics move on to free agency

BOSTON -- The plan for the Boston Celtics to upgrade their roster began with draft night. 

They had the top overall pick and traded down with Philadelphia for the No. 3 spot, where they selected Jayson Tatum in addition to getting a future first-round pick.

Now on to phase two: Free agency.

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A year ago this time, the Boston Celtics went into free agency feeling pretty good about their chances of landing at least one high-impact difference maker.

Years of meticulous salary cap management had Boston in position to add a pair of max-salaried players in one haul, something you seldom see happen in the NBA.

Boston secured Al Horford,  who was widely viewed as the second-best free agent available, with a four-year, $113 million contract.

The Celtics were on the short list of contenders for the top free agent, Kevin Durant, who eventually signed with the Golden State Warriors and led them to an NBA title earlier this month, the franchise's second championship in the last three years. 

Free agency officially begins on Saturday and Boston once again finds itself on the short list of teams for one of the better free agents-to-be: Utah's Gordon Hayward.

“Target number one for Boston,” one league executive texted to CSNNE.com on Friday when asked about Hayward. "I'm not telling you something you and the rest of the NBA world [haven't] known for a while; he's the guy in this free agent class that they really, really want.”

While a number of teams may enter the race for Hayward, he is expected to choose from one of these three: Utah, Boston and Miami.

As good as a Hayward signing may be for Boston, he’s not the biggest name on the free-agent market.

That would be Durant and Stephen Curry, both of whom are expected to re-sign with the Warriors. The likelihood of either winding up on another team can be summed up in two words – no chance.

And that leaves Hayward as arguably the best free agent available to be on another team’s roster next season.

But in terms of addressing specific needs, the Celtics are among the teams that can benefit from what is shaping up to be a position-less NBA, one where your best scorers in the paint are guards and your best passers play in the frontcourt.

For a good chunk of last season, the 6-foot-10 Horford was Boston’s top assist man, while 6-2 guard Avery Bradley was the Celtics’ top rebounder.

Danny Ainge, Boston’s president of basketball operations, hears all the time about how the Celtics need to become a better rebounding team.

Despite finishing with more wins than any team in the Eastern Conference, Boston was among the worst rebounding teams in several categories. Their defensive rebounding percentage of .485 ranked 27th out of 30 NBA teams.

Boston was the only team to win 50 or more games last season that was not ranked among the top 20 teams in rebounding percentage.

And while the knee-jerk response would be to go out and sign big men whose strength is rebounding the ball, Ainge is convinced that rebounding for the Celtics has to be across-the-board team effort.

“You have to have other guys that rebound,” Ainge said during an interview with CSN’s Kyle Draper and A. Sherrod Blakely. “Those teams with small lineups, you still have to find a way to rebound. Obviously, we were a very good team this year and small at a lot of positions and it seemed our big guys took the brunt of not being good rebounders. It really is a team rebounding game. This was the case even when I played with the Big 3. We know that’s a weakness. We need to add size and length to our roster.”

That’s why in many ways, Tatum was such a solid addition for Boston in last week’s NBA draft.

While he is given a lot of praise for his offensive versatility, Ainge also liked the fact that the 19-year-old was a really good rebounder particularly on the defensive glass.

For Boston, become a better team on the defensive boards would go far in them improving their rebounding as a whole and in doing so, show growth for a team whose defensive rating (105.5) ranked 12th in the NBA after beginning the season defensively as one of the NBA’s worst teams.

“Rebounding and size goes to all the positions. Rebounding is a five-man effort. We just added size,” said Ainge, referring to Tatum. “That’s huge; he’s a terrific defensive rebounder.”

Boston should also benefit from a pair of first-round draft picks from last season, Ante Zizic and Guerschon Yabusele, who spent this past season playing overseas but are expected to join the Celtics roster for the 2017-2018 season.

“We have some guys that can help us improve in that area,” Ainge said.

And improvement, more than anything else, is the name of the game for the Celtics in free agency.

Well aware that no one single move will move them past Cleveland or Golden State, Ainge knows progress for his team may not be as instantaneous as some fans – or he for that matter – would like.

“We have a lot of really good players. A lot of gritty guys,” Ainge said. “But we could use like a little more talent; that’s the bottom line. The guy that can get his own shot, create for others, demands double teams on a regular basis. Maybe some of our young guys can develop into that. But that’s a ways away."

Ainge added, “But to me, a true contender, I don’t think it’s just a coincidence that LeBron James and Kevin Durant are in the NBA Finals.  They’re arguably the two best half-court guys. They’re there with [Russell] Westbrook and James Harden, of course, are great offensive players. But you have to have more than just them. We feel we have the [other guys].  We just need a guy like that [to] give us a chance.”