Why not take a chance?

Multiple sources have come out saying that the Boston Celtics will wait until the end of the summer to choose the right head coach for them. This way, Ainge can draft the players he wants, and he can get a chance to see assistant coach Jay Larranaga run the summer league team. By then, most of the top head coaches with experience should be gone. This could bode well for him. Why not take a chance on someone like that, like the Nets are doing on Jason Kidd? Clearly, we are not going to be a contender for a few years, at the very least, so we don’t need to waste money over paying an amazing head coach.

Better yet, why not try having a player coach? David Cowens and Bill Russell have done it. Yes, I’m being serious. Why not have Kevin Garnett try it? Pay him one salary, give him a few good assistant coaches, and who knows, downloadpeople may want to come play for him. He already came out saying he admires Bill Russell more than anyone and shapes his game to be like him. I mean, he’s the greatest champion in all of sports. He won two titles as a player-coach after winning 9 others. Clearly, the Celtics aren’t in the same position to win any titles but there are some pro’s to this extremely, extremely unlikely possibility:

  • KG is one of, if not the best, defensive mind in the game. He knows exactly where to be at all times, and often barks out orders to others so that they get their act together, and move around correctly.
  • Let’s face it, whoever coaches this team, is going to have to put up with Rajon Rondo, assuming we keep him. That’s no easy feat. KG already has been able to help mold Rondo into a better leader and this is someone who Rondo can respect. The last thing we need is someone like Stan Van Gundy coming in to ruin things (like he did in Orlando by driving out Dwight Howard).
  • KG probably does not want to play for anyone but Rivers due to his extreme loyalty, and that seems almost impossible now, seeing as the league vetoed it. He probably wouldn’t mind playing for himself though, and since we are not going to be in line to win a championship, he can decrease his minutes and mold the younger guys, like Sullinger, into a KG 2.0.
  • Everyone respects him. Most people have said that he is the best locker room presence there is. Why take that away? He brings the championship mentality to the court every night. Just because he can’t do it himself anymore, doesn’t mean we should allow that to get away.

Let’s get one thing straight: In no way do I think this will happen. I just think it is an interesting way to look at things. In a time where we are rebuilding, why not take a shot on someone like him. It could make Danny Ainge the smartest man around. Red Auerbach did it when he retired as coach and moved into the front office, and that played out quite nicely for the greatest coach this game as ever seen.

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Trade Update

There has been a new breakthrough in the potential Celtics trade with the LA Clippers. Since the Clips were not gonna let Eric Bledsoe come here, we have decided to go another route. We want them to take the contract of either Jason Terry or Courtney Lee (both are owed $11 Million over the next two years). We would now trade Garnett and Doc Rivers and one of those two to them for Deandre Jordan (solid player and fun to watch, but not someone you build your team around) and a future first-round pick, and maybe even another role player. They are saying that the deal, if it goes through, will be done later today or Tuesday the 18th.

Typical Lebron

As annoying as it is when Lebron complains about a blatant foul, at least when it happens you know it’s one of those rare moments where Stern has slipped up and something is actually called against Queen James. I could watch Lebron complain, cry, and moan about calls all day, so long as it means he is losing. All aboard the San Antonio bandwagon. 3 more wins. Let’s go Spurs!

lebron crying against spurs

Coach Karl Ousted

The NBA’s Coach of the Year, George Karl, of the Denver Nuggets has been fired, according to a source with ESPN. Karl had one more year on his contract and wanted to come back to the team, but after their GM left for Toronto, the team decided that they downloadwanted to go in another direction. Karl led a team with absolutely no All-Stars to a 57 win season and a 3rd seed in the playoffs. Yes, they lost early again. Karl has only made it out of the first round once out of nine times. I get that part. But he hasn’t always had the best players. He had a young, more immature than now Carmelo (hard to believe after this, I know), and a bunch of below average players. Even this season, their leading scorer was Ty Lawson with 16.7 PPG (31st in the league).

The Nugs were 38-3 at home this season which was best in the league. They were also 24-4 after the all-star break. Karl has coached 25 seasons and has a 1131-756 record but can’t seem to get it done in the playoffs. You can bet that a team is going to pick him up for next season. He has already talked to the Clippers.

Name Change Getting Closer

Just as I said back in December (Click Here), the Charlotte Bobcats will bring the Hornets name back to the city. Now that the Hornets have become the Pelicans, they have a chance to bring the popular name back. They won’t be able to do it for another 18 months, but Michael Jordan thinks that they should be ready for the new name by the start of the 2014 season.

The Charlotte Hornets logo is still quite popular on gear today. No one really wears Bobcats stuff, and why would you. Maybe this will make them improve.. but lets be honest, it won’t. At least they will look good and maybe bring some more fans to the arena. They can’t get any worse.

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LeBron MVP

Well the Celtics season is over after a heart-breaking loss on Friday to the cocky and arrogant, New York Knicks. The next few months will really show where this organization is headed with the decisions they face with KG and Paul Pierce. However, this story is not about that. Lebron James won his 4th MVP this weekend. He became the second player to get 120 of 121 possible first place votes. Shaq did it 13 years ago. The lone voter, who decided to back Carmelo Anthony instead, was the Boston imagesGlobe’s Gary Washburn.

To me, this is ridiculous. I know everyone in Boston hates LeBron, but the main reason why he wasn’t unanimous, was because everyone thought he would be. Just so happens that it was a guy from Massachusetts to snub him. We all know that he is the best player in the league and by far the most efficient. If he took as many shots as Melo, he would be the leading scorer, but he is more than that, clearly. Plus, Melo sucked against us during the last 3 games of the series and I really thought we had a chance to steal it from those scumbags.

Kevin Garnett did receive one vote for MVP, but not a first place one. This was enough to tie him for 12th in the balloting.

First Gay Athlete

Jason Collins has come out to the public announcing just a few minutes ago that he is gay. He becomes the first active player in a major professional sport to announce this. As most know, the downloadCeltics had Collins on the roster this season before they traded him to the Wizards earlier in the year. Now, Collins is a free agent, and hopefully this will not deteriorate his value in any way.

He wrote the following for Sports Illustrated:

“Now I’m a free agent, literally and figuratively. I’ve reached that enviable state in life in which I can do pretty much what I want. And what I want is to continue to play basketball,” he wrote. “I still love the game, and I still have something to offer. My coaches and teammates recognize that. At the same time, I want to be genuine and authentic and truthful.”

It is great that he is the first major athlete to do so while still playing the game. I know there is going to be some bounce back from some players and organizations, but hopefully that is limited. It takes a lot of courage to do what Jason did. Congratulations

Celtics Playoff Preview

The Celtics begin their playoff series against the New York Knicks on Saturday at 3 P.M. at Madison Square Garden. The Knicks were real hot at the end of the season, winning 16 out of their last 18 games and clinching the Atlantic Conference for the first time in a long time. The Celtics, however, only won 4 out of their last 10 games. But if last year tells us anything, it’s that this team is built for the playoffs.

The following stats were taken from ESPN.com:

  Knicks Celtics
PPG 100 96.5
RPG 40.6 39.3
APG 19.3 22.8
FG % 0.448 0.465
FT % 0.759 0.776
3P % 0.376 0.358

I do not want to count the Celtics out, even if the Knicks have been playing extremely well, but if the C’s want to take this one, I am willing to bet that it’s going to go 6 or 7 games. Is this team built for that? The Knicks have many dangerous weapons, especially the scoring 1champion of the regular season—Carmelo Anthony. He is averaging nearly 29 PPG. They also have 5 others that average in double-digits, including J.R. Smith who is averaging 18.1 PPG and hasn’t started a game all season. Tyson Chandler is their big defensive presence who can out rebound us consistently, and Amar’e and Felton who can put home 12-18 points on any given night.

The Celtics were led once again by Captain Paul Pierce. Pierce had another great season averaging 18.6 PPG and logging over 33 minutes per contest. Jeff Green has really stepped up ever since he dropped 43 against the Heat. He also put in 34 against the Pistons, and over 20 in many other games. KG is still solid with his mid-range jumper and if he can stay healthy, he should be able to help with his 7.8 Rebounds per game. Avery Bradley has been off for about a month, but still tenacious on defense, and we need him to keep that up. The Knicks can shoot so we need to make sure that we are pressuring the ball enough to make sure they don’t feel comfortable. Let’s go Celtics!I do not want to count the Celtics out, even if the Knicks have been playing extremely well, but if the C’s want to take this one, I am willing to bet that it’s going to go 6 or 7 games. Is this team built for that?

The Knicks have many dangerous weapons, especially the scoring champion of the regular season—Carmelo Anthony. He is averaging nearly 29 PPG. They also have 5 others that average in double-digits, including J.R. Smith who is averaging 18.1 PPG and hasn’t started a game all season. Tyson Chandler is their big defensive presence who can out rebound us consistently, and Amar’e and Felton who can put home 12-18 points on any given night.

NBA: Boston Celtics at New York Knicks

LeBron: The Next Chapter

Miami Heat Forward LeBron James
Picture Courtesy of palmbeachpost.com

A Decade of Dominance: 10…that’s the number of years LeBron James has played in the NBA. It’s hard to believe, because it seems like just the other day we were still in awe watching astounding highlight tapes of a kid out of St. Mary’s high school in Akron, OH. Nevertheless, King James has enjoyed all the riches, spoils, and rewards a King could desire during this decade (aside from a few struggles along the way). But what about the next 10 years?

At 28-years-old, LeBron James is already in the prime of his career. Which is crazy considering he’s been making headlines and highlight reels since 2003. With this year’s NBA Playoffs right around the corner, so too is the Next chapter of LeBron’ career. But before we gaze into the NBA’ crystal basketball to see LeBron’s future, here’s a rundown of his reign as King:

LeBron doing his pre-game powder ritual in Cleveland when he played for the Cavaliers from 2003-2010.
Picture Courtesy of espn.com

Taking the Throne: LeBron’s Career Achievements, Awards, and Statistics:

Awards:

2003-2004 NBA Rookie of the Year

2003-2004 NBA All-Rookie First team

Nine time NBA All-Star (2005-2013)

Two time NBA All-Star Game MVP (2006, 2008)

Two time All-NBA Second Team (2005, 2007)

Six time All-NBA First Team (2006, 2008-2013)

2008 NBA Scoring Champion

Four time All-NBA Defensive Team (2009-2012)

Three time MVP Award Winner (2009, 2010, 2012)

Three time Olympic Medalist (2004 Bronze Athens, 2008 Gold Beijing, 2012 Gold London)

2012 NBA Finals MVP

2012 NBA Finals Champion

LeBron again with the Cavs about to throw-down his trademark break-away tomahawk slam.
Picture Courtesy of zimbio.com

Achievements:

One of eight NBA players to Win three MVP awards

One of eight NBA players to score 2,000 points or more in seven consecutive seasons

One of four NBA players to average at least 20 points, five rebounds, and five assists in their rookie year. (Oscar Robertson, Michael Jordan, Tyreke Evans)

One of five NBA players to average over 25 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists per game in a season (five times) (Oscar Robertson achieved it six times, John Havlicek twice, Larry Bird, and Michael Jordan)

One of three NBA players to average at least 30 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists in a single season. (Oscar Robertson achieved it five times, and Michael Jordan)

One of two NBA players to average at least 27 points, six rebounds, and six assists for six consecutive seasons. (Behind only Oscar Robertson who had eight consecutive seasons)

One of three NBA players to average at least 30 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists in a post-season series. (the other two are Oscar Robertson and Larry Bird)

Only NBA player to average 26 points, six rebounds, and six assists for their career

Only NBA player to post at least 2,000 points, 500 rebounds, 500 assists, and 100 steals in four consecutive seasons

Only NBA player to score 30 or more points while also shooting 60 percent from the field in six consecutive games

And that’s just some of the achievements, there’s over two-dozen other achievements I left out to save space for this post.

James about to windmill it home for the Heat
Picture Courtesy of swaggnews.com

Stats: (Career Stats as of April 12th, 2013)

Points: 21, 037 (32nd on the NBA All-Time scoring list) Rebounds: 5,540 Assists: 5,287 (46th on the all-time list) Blocks: 649 Steals: 1,322 Double-Doubles: 255 Triple-Doubles: 36

Post-season: Points: 3,275 (16th on the all-time post-season list) Rebounds: 998 (44th on the all-time post-season list) Assists: 772 (22nd on the all-time post-season list) Blocks: 109 (53rd on the all-time post-season list) Steals: 195 (22nd on the all-time post-season list) Games: 115 (80th on the all-time post-season list) Double-Doubles: 48 Triple Doubles: 8

A King is Crowned: Last year LeBron James and the Miami Heat claimed the 2012 NBA Finals Championship and appear to be poised to win this year’s NBA Finals. Which would give King James another jewel to add to his crown, so to speak. This brings us back to the beginning of this post. With the beginning of this year’s NBA Playoffs, LeBron will put pen to paper (more specifically the rock to the rim) and write what will be the first pages of the next chapter in his already storied career.

So, what does the future hold for LeBron? The Answer: It’s entirely up to James himself.

While teammates Dwayne Wade (31)  and Chris Bosh (29) are a tad older than LeBron and may call it a career earlier than he will (likely due to injury or age), this Big Three should remain intact for at least another 5 years. However, James could opt out of his contract with Miami after the 2014 season. Meaning he could make another big “Decision” via free agency.

Which could spark more than a few what if scenarios around league front offices, as in “what if we had LeBron?”. An even bigger question…what if King James returned to his old castle in Cleveland?

Imagine for a moment James playing with star point guard Kyrie Irving, and a talented power forward in Tristan Thompson. Throw in a couple of other free agents/role players and you’ve got a Cleveland team that could go the distance. Granted, it’s unlikely team owner Dan Gilbert would even consider allowing LeBron back, but the idea is stimulating enough.

Then there’s the more realistic route, which is James re-signing with Miami to finish out his career in South Beach. James could then be a key cog in continuing to build the franchise into a Dynasty if all were to go well. Even after Wade and Bosh leave, James could sway other top players to bring their talents to South Beach until he too retires.

Miami guard Dwayne Wade (left) James (center) and center Chris Bosh (right) all celebrating their 2012 NBA Finals Championship
Picture Courtesy of washingtonpost.com

Everlasting Empire?: LeBron James has certainly changed the landscape of the NBA in more ways than one in his 10 seasons thus far, and he will continue to re-construct it for years to come. Which leads to one final question…where will James rank among the greatest NBA players of all-time when it is all said and done? The Answer: The sky is truly the limit for LeBron.

Here’s a projected finish should LeBron play another 10 seasons based solely on his career averages:

(stats based on James’ career averages over the next 10 years in which he would play 800 more games, 80 games a season, without any major injuries.)

Points: 43,117 (finishing 1st overall surpassing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’ 38,387)

Rebounds: 11,380 (finishing at 26th all-time just outside the top 25 behind Elgin Baylor’ 11,463)

Assists: 10,887 (finishing 3rd all-time behind Jason Kidd 12,079 and John Stockton 15,806)

Blocks: 1,149 (finishing well within the top 50 at 36th all-time)

Steals: 2,682 (finishing 2nd all-time past Jason Kidd’ 2,679 and under John Stockton’ 3,265)

Based on those regular season career projected stats, LeBron would likely finish at or towards the top of nearly every statistical category in post-season career stats. As far as the number of championships goes, like the post-season itself neither playoff spot nor NBA Finals trophy is promised to any NBA team.

However, consider this interesting stat: Michael Jordan won his 1st of six NBA championships when he was…28 years old. Meaning LeBron may just be getting started on his ring collection also.


Picture Courtesy of teenbulletin.com

Final Thoughts: Hypothetically speaking James has a chance to end up with insane career numbers when he walks away from the game. However, realistic thinking tells us that James will eventually not be the same King James at some point down the line, and as a result his career numbers will see a steady decline until his NBA days are done.

Nevertheless, James can continue to play at a competitive level for at least the next 5 seasons and can likely bring home some more hardware (MVP awards, NBA Finals trophies/rings, etc.) in that time-frame. Past that, only time will tell how long the King will watch over his throne. Until then we can only watch, wait, and debate.

C’s Drop Title

This marks the first time in the KG Era (formerly Big 3 Era) that the Boston Celtics did not win the Atlantic Division Title. The New York Knicks have carmelo-anthony-knicks-celticsclinched their first Division Crown since 1994. It looked like either the Nets or maybe even the Celts had a shot a few weeks back, but then New York went on their current 13 game win streak.

The last time the Knickerbockers won the Atlantic, Patrick Ewing was in his 9th season in the league. Ironically, Doc Rivers was also on that team. However, he only played in 19 games that season. On a side note, Carmelo Anthony passed Lebron James for most jerseys sold over the past year.

I know that the Knicks have been playing lights out, but I still don’t fear them as much as some other teams.  Carmelo can score, but typically (with the exception of one 28 point game) is quieter against us that other teams. The person I most fear on that team is sixth-man J.R. Smith. Smith is a spark off the bench and has already scorched us for 32 and 24 points. Do you think they are the favorites in the East to take down the Heat? Or do the C’s still stand a chance? After last season, I am done counting Boston out. The Celtics take on the Nets tonight.