Rajon Rondo seemingly can’t catch a break these days.
After laboring through much of last season while being limited by a torn ACL, the point guard is expected the next 6-8 weeks of the season after breaking a bone in his left hand last Thursday.
The timeline would seemingly rule out any possibility of Rondo playing opening night though right? Not quite. In an interview with CSNNE’s Mike Gorman the 28-year-old thinks he might return sooner than anticipated.
“Hopefully I won’t miss any games this year,” Rondo said in an exclusive interview with CSNNE’s Mike Gorman. “Lord willing I heal correctly and I’ll be back in no time.
“They’re telling me 6-to-8 [weeks]. But that means nothing to me.”
Gorman then asked if Rondo would be a possibility for Opening Night at the end of October.
“Always,” Rondo said
Before you start penciling in Rondo for opening night though, it’s important to note the decision makers indicated the team will be very careful when dealing with the return of their prized free agent to-be.
“We will be very cautious with him,” Ainge warned earlier this week. “I think a lot of people underestimate how much you use your left hand, not just dribbling and passing, he uses it a lot. We want to be careful and make sure there’s nothing long-term there.”
We’ll continue to monitor the situation here at CelticsHub as training camp continues. In the meantime, expect Evan Turner, Marcus Smart and Phil Pressey to handle the reps at point guard for the time being.
So the start of the 2014-15 season is starting to look a lot like the start of the 2013-14 season:
The Celtics are not projected to be good. The 76ers will be worse, but after that, it’s murky and Boston could make a run for a top pick.
Young players developing will be the story, rather than wins.
Rajon Rondo won’t return until a month or more after the season begins.
The Celtics announced on Friday evening that Rondo had sustained a broken hand after slipping and falling in his home (apparently, Rondo told the team it was in his shower). He underwent a successful surgery and will miss six-to-eight weeks recovering.
We’ll have considerably more on this as the week progresses, especially since Danny Ainge and Rondo are expected to speak about it at Media Day on Monday. For now, a couple of quick thoughts: Read the rest of this entry »
In the deal that sent Keith Bogans packing from Boston wherever his $5 million paid vacation has taken him over the past year, the Celtics acquired a pair of second-round picks in 2016 and 2017 from the Cavaliers, which requires very little analyzing. Boston has two more picks that may or may not be used.
The Celtics also acquired a 2014 second-round pick — ex-Stanford big man Dwight Powell. For those of you who aren’t familiar with his game, Powell shot 46.2 percent from the field in his senior season, and 25 percent from behind the arc. He pulled down roughly seven rebounds per game and dished out 3.1 assists.
Here’s a video of Powell working out at the IMPACT basketball facility in Las Vegas.
If tape of a second-round prospect running through pre-draft workouts doesn’t particularly intrigue you, I summed up the video here: Read the rest of this entry »
This was pretty much a done deal since Summer League, when Boston put together its three-team deal for Tyler Zeller and a pick that limited roster space for non-guaranteed deals. For the Celtics, assets are far more important than non-guaranteed deals, no matter how likable the players who were signed to those non-guaranteed deals.
That being said, Chris Babb and Chris Johnson were extremely likable. Both were hard workers who contributed positively to last year’s bad team, and both should have long professional careers either in the NBA or abroad.
Keith Bogans, who was paid $5 million last season to score 12 points and go 3-for-6 (50 percent!) from 3-point range in 55 minutes, has been dealt.
The Celtics gave his massive non-guaranteed deal to Cleveland for a package of uninspiring flotsam and jetsam, including Dwight Powell, a pair of second-round picks, and several non-guaranteed deals that almost certainly won’t make it to training camp.
We’ll take a closer look at Dwight Powell later (so make sure you tune in for that can’t-miss content), but for now, here’s the deal in full: Read the rest of this entry »
Right now, the Celtics have arguably the deepest depth chart in the NBA, just from a pure bodies standpoint heading into NBA training camp next week. 20 players are signed under contract, 14 players have guaranteed contracts and oh yeah, the Celtics still have to officially announcing the signing of Evan Turner sometime before media day on Monday.
Additional moves will be made before the season begins, but head coach Brad Stevens knows even when those are made he will have plenty of options at each position on the floor at any point in the game. While speaking with reporters in Dedham on Tuesday, Stevens walked through some of those possibilities.
“The funny part is that I’m sure most [observers] will be put in a position where you have to name our starting lineup and our rotation. Put it down in pencil. If you go through it, like really go through it and put yourself in my shoes, there’s about 150 different variations of [lineups] that you could go with. More so than last year and I thought last year we were pretty hard to figure out. It’s been a fun puzzle to think about and it’s going figure itself out when we start practice,” Stevens said.
Remember when Vitor was a surprise contributor at the start of last season? Barely, because that was back when Jordan Crawford was the Eastern Conference Player of the Week and everything paled in comparison to the Steez?
But Faverani is still a Celtic (and Steez is not, so pour one out), and with the dearth of center talent on the roster, you can bet he’ll get some minutes this season. Boston — coached by Brad Stevens, and not married to any particular traditional lineup — will likely try to run Kelly Olynyk and Jared Sullinger together, but if that doesn’t work, Tyler Zeller and Faverani might be the center rotation. Faverani can stretch the floor a little bit, but his defensive contributions last season were minimal at best, and the Celtics already have floor-stretching bigs who offer minimal defensive contributions.
But not only is Garnett going to be back — something the Nets have expected for months, and which was confirmed by multiple players saying Monday he has been working out at the team’s practice facility for the past couple weeks — new coach Lionel Hollins said Garnett will be the team’s starting power forward when the season begins next month.
“There is nobody in the gym that I would put in his place,” Hollins said. “He has earned the right to have that opportunity, to be the starter from Day 1.
“Somebody has got to knock him out. … It’s got to be like a heavyweight fight. I don’t see that really happening, but if it happens then I will deal with that decision when it comes. But I think when we start playing, [Garnett] will be the starting power forward.”
Somebody has to knock him out? That could be a problem — Garnett is pretty experienced as a fighter.
The Celtics won 25 games last year, so it’s not really a surprise that four of the 15 players on their roster were in the bottom fifth of the NBA, per ESPN’s annual #NBARank. As always, the rankings are fun, a little ridiculous, and a great way to pass time between now and when games start in October.
#499: Chris Babb.
A quick Chris Babb story: After a game in March, Rajon Rondo was holding court in the Celtics locker room in the doorway. Given Rondo’s elusive post-game nature, his post-game conferences always attract a crowd, and in this case, the crowd was actually probably a fire hazard.
Jared Sullinger and Jeff Green were having none of it — both 6’9ish, 200-plus pound athletes made their way to the door and pushed their way through.
Meanwhile Babb stood back from the crowd, his backpack strapped on, patiently waiting for everyone to stop asking Rondo questions.
“You can probably push your way through,” I told him. “I don’t think anyone would get mad.”
“I know,” he said, smiling. “I don’t want to make your guys’ jobs harder, though.”
The Boston Celtics still need to do some work in order to trim down their roster before the start of the 2014-15 NBA season. That’s not the case for us here at CelticsHub. In fact, we want to do the opposite and add to our roster.
For the first time in a couple years, we are looking to bring aboard additional contributors for the coming season. Are you interested in writing about the Celtics and the NBA? We want to hear from you. Here’s a quick Q-and-A to help guide you through the process of applying to be a part of the CH team.
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There is no better example of that than CelticsHub alumnus Zach Lowe, who now writes for Grantland. Zach had limited NBA writing experience before we started CelticsHub together back in 2009 and he has risen to the top of the NBA writing ranks in a few short years through hard work and great insight. The work done here by several other members of our staff (besides Zach) have led to bigger opportunities for them on a local (MassLive, Boston.com, CBSBoston) and national level (ESPN, Sports Illustrated, Bleacher Report).
Besides all that, writing about the Celtics and the NBA is just a lot of fun. If you are an informed NBA fan, there is plenty of room for you here so we encourage you to apply, even if writing about/watching the NBA is just a hobby, not something you hope will turn into a full-time gig.
CelticsHub is also a credentialed publication for all Celtics games. That means you may have the opportunity to cover the team in person, ask questions in the locker room, etc. Finally, there may be opportunity for modest monthly stipend, depending on the level of your contributions.
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