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Chad Ford’s latest mock draft has Celtics taking Aaron Gordon at 5

Draft prospect posts are absurd speculation before the lottery, and overthinking things at this point is a relatively useless venture.

But knowing that we are overthinking things has never stopped us before, so here we go: Chad Ford — prognosticator extraordinaire when it comes to draft projections over at ESPN — posted his latest mock draft. Here’s what he had to say about Boston (behind the ESPN Insider wall), currently slotted at fifth:

“The Celtics could go a lot of different ways here, but most of those ways duplicate something they already have. The team would love to get their hands on Embiid, as he would help them with one of their biggest needs. But Gordon is intriguing here. He’s a hybrid forward, but his athleticism and motor allow him to thrive at both the three and the four defensively. He adds toughness and does all the little things coaches love. I think he’d be a great fit on this Celtics squad.”

Some thoughts after the jump… Read the rest of this entry »

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Sunday Fun-Day Notebook: Rondo, Pierce, Joel, Zarren and Grande

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As you watch the NBA playoffs and get excited for the draft lottery, you can read about all the happenings in the Celtics world. There are surprisingly a lot of news and notes:

STEVENS ON RONDO: “I THINK HE’LL HAVE A MONSTER YEAR NEXT YEAR”

Rajon Rondo, who returned 29,233,380 seconds after his ACL surgery, began his 2013-14 season on a personal six-game losing streak, which was part of a 12-game losing streak for the Celtics when he was in the lineup. However, Rondo averaged fewer than 25 minutes per game in his first six contests in 2014. He then played more than 35 minutes per game the rest of the way. Mark Murphy of the Boston Globe writes about how Brad Stevens and Danny Ainge think that more than his endurance is on the way back:

“I heard Danny (Ainge) say this and I agree — I think he’ll have a monster year next year,” said Stevens. “A lot of that will be determined by his work in the summer. And as everyone knows, (the coaches are) available all summer (to work with).”

In his eighth NBA season, Rondo still was able to tally 13 double-doubles in 30 games. We even saw him make at least three 3-pointers four different times in 2014, the first four times in his career. Although Rondo had some flashes of brilliance, Stevens saw him shoot 17 percent from downtown in his final 12 contests as well as have some very frustrating times with his ball handling:

“Because he was coming off the ACL he had a couple of little nagging things as well, and it contributed to that inconsistency and availability, especially late in the year.”

Rondo missed four of the Celtics’ last six games of the season with injuries to his shin and hamstring.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Celtics Draft Odds Breakdown After Losing Tiebreaker

bos_g_danny-ainge_mb_576In what comes as a minor blow to the Celtics’ lottery chances, the Celtics lost a draft tiebreaker with the Utah Jazz yesterday afternoon.

While the loss won’t provide much of an impact for the lottery itself, it will matter if neither the Jazz or Celtics don’t jump into the lottery top-3, as I explained in a piece I wrote for Boston.com:

Boston’s chances of earning a top-3 pick in the NBA Draft are only slightly diminished with the tiebreaker loss. The Celtics will have a 10.3 percent chance at the top pick and 33.4 percent chance at a top-three pick. Utah will have a 10.4 chance at the top pick and 33.7 chance at a top-three pick, thanks to the win.

Where the tiebreaker loss really hurts for Boston is if the Celtics are not selected for one of the top three picks on draft lottery night. Read the rest of this entry »

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Jabari Parker Declares for 2014 NBA Draft

5-jabari-parker-duke-freshmanAfter one of the roughest seasons in recent memory, good news keeps coming in for the Boston Celtics. After the team secured the fourth-worst record in the NBA last night, ensuring a 33.5 percent chance at the one of the top 3 picks in the 2014 NBA Draft.

Wednesday afternoon, that draft pool got a little bit deeper as freshman phenom Jabari Parker declared for the 2014 NBA Draft via an article he wrote for SI.com. Here is a key excerpt of the well-written piece, which explained his decision:

I haven’t consulted many people during this process. I talked to my parents, though. They simply said it was my decision and they would stand behind me either way. They just want me to be happy.

Ultimately, I boiled my decision down to two simple questions:

Which environment — college or the NBA — offers me the best opportunity to grow as a basketball player?

Which environment — college or the NBA — offers me the best opportunity to grow and develop off the court?

The answer to both questions is undeniably the NBA. Read the rest of this entry »

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Lottery Odds: Celtics Are Tied At Fourth With Utah

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With last night’s loss to Washington in the regular season finale and Utah’s 136-130 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, the Celtics finished with the best possible scenario entering the night. We covered the various possibilities yesterday afternoon, and a tie for fourth with the Jazz was as good as Boston could have hoped for.

But Boston’s own pick wasn’t the only thing in play — with Brooklyn slipping into a tie with Washington in records, the Celtics pick (previously 18) could now be 17th, pending a coin flip. It’s not a big jump, by any means, but it does make a slim difference. Read the rest of this entry »

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Grades: Wizards 118, Celtics 102

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Washington Wizards 118 Final
Recap | Box Score
102 Boston Celtics
Brandon Bass, PF 26 MIN | 7-9 FG | 2-3 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 16 PTS | -14


The well-deserved winner of the Red Auerbach award finished with the type of consistent performance that won him the honor. Not sure if he would survive a roster purge, but he’s been an incredibly steady presence.

Jeff Green, SF 36 MIN | 6-15 FG | 6-7 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 20 PTS | -21


It’s the end of the season and we are feeling friendly, so let’s credit Green with getting to the line seven times.

Kelly Olynyk, C 30 MIN | 10-16 FG | 4-5 FT | 7 REB | 5 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 24 PTS | +5


Olynyk has been really, really good over the past few weeks with consistent minutes and a consistent role. I’m am the excites.

Avery Bradley, PG 37 MIN | 7-18 FG | 1-1 FT | 5 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 18 PTS | -17


Danny Ainge before the game, on whether players having an injury history can affect money offered to them: “It can, yeah. Sure.”

Phil Pressey, PG 42 MIN | 3-12 FG | 3-4 FT | 5 REB | 10 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 9 PTS | -18


It doesn’t get more Phil Pressey than 10 assists (including my personal favorite of the entire season: A between-the-legs hike to Brandon Bass for a slam) and 25 percent shooting.

Chris Johnson, SF 29 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-1 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 4 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | -6


Chris Johnson was part of the crew that brought so much energy in the second quarter, the Celtics almost avoided a blow out.

Joel Anthony, C 29 MIN | 2-3 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 5 PTS | -1


Think Boston wanted to win this game? Take a look at how many minutes Joel Anthony played and re-think your position. It’s also worth noting that Anthony played as well as you could reasonably expect Joel Anthony to play.

Chris Babb, SG 11 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | -8


Boston’s first guy off the bench!

One Thing We Saw

  1. We’ll have a ton of posts over the next few days, including quotes from Danny Ainge, a lottery round-up, and lots of other fun stuff, but for now, thanks everybody very much for reading, commenting, agreeing and disagreeing with everything we write here at Celtics Hub. Without you guys, we are just yelling Celtics opinions at no one, and nobody likes those guys. Thank you all for everything.

Follow Tom on Twitter: @Tom_NBA.

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Brandon Bass Wins The Red Auerbach Award

The Celtics announced before the game that Brandon Bass is the recipient of the 2013-14 Red Auerbach award, a somewhat vague honor handed out to the player or coach who ”best exemplifies the spirit of what it means to be a Celtic through performance on the court and off.”

Winners in previous years:

2013: Kevin Garnett
2012: Paul Pierce
2011: Doc Rivers
2010: Rajon Rondo
2009: Ray Allen
2008: Kevin Garnett
2007: Al Jefferson
2006: Paul Pierce

Bass makes a lot of sense as a recipient this year. With no star to honor (since Rondo sat out much of the year) and several veterans playing a lot of tough minutes for a very bad team, it made sense to reward the longest standing veteran. But it’s not just a lifetime achievement award: Bass has participated in various community events around Boston all season, and he’s been a quiet contributor all year. Read the rest of this entry »

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It All Ends Tonight, Thank God: Boston’s Updated Lottery Odds

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Previewing tonight’s action, we take a look — as we have basically every day this awful season — at Boston’s lottery odds.

Right now, Boston has three potential finishes:

1. Tied for fourth with Utah. Boston would have a 10.35 percent chance at the top pick, and a 33.5 percent chance at a top-3 pick. The Celtics only get these odds if they lose to Washington tonight and Utah beats Minnesota.

2. Alone at fifth. Boston would have an 8.8 percent chance at the top pick, and a 29.2 percent chance at the top-3. The Celtics get these odds if they lose to Washington and Utah loses to Minnesota. Alternatively, the standings would finish like this if Boston beats Washington and the Lakers beat whatever collection of scrubs Gregg Popovich puts out on the floor. The loss to Washington combined with Utah’s win over Minnesota seems the most likely option. Read the rest of this entry »

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How Does Phil Pressey’s Recent Play Affect His Chances Of Being Re-Signed?

Yesterday, I wrote a story on Phil Pressey for MassLive.com. You can read it in its entirety here. Here’s an excerpt:

Pressey has been one of the leaders in efficiency among rookie point guards in 2013-14, sporting an assist-to-turnover ration of 7.6 to 2.6 per 36 minutes. Pace-adjusted stats can be deceiving, since they normalize a small sample size and often make players who compete against second units look better. But in this year’s rookie class, only Trey Burke has a better assist-to-turnover ratio per 36 minutes than Pressey. It’s also worth noting that as a starter, Pressey’s ratio stays largely the same: 6.9 assists to 2.5 turnovers.

What’s more, Pressey hasn’t exactly made a point of being careful. His style of play mixes no-look passes with tricky dribbling, all of which — according to Pressey — is simply the best way to make a play happen.

“It’s unconscious,” Pressey said after Friday’s game. “Danny Ainge has told me to make the same passes and still be creative, but kind of tone it down a little. But sometimes, I see something and the only way I can get him the ball is to be flashy and creative. I feel like that flashy and creative allows me to work.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Grades: 76ers 113, Celtics 108

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Boston Celtics 108 FinalRecap | Box Score 113 Philadelphia 76ers
Brandon Bass, PF 38 MIN | 3-11 FG | 3-4 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 1 TO | 9 PTS | +8
Just because we’re on auto-pilot doesn’t mean you can take your hands off the wheel, Brandon.

Jeff Green, SF 38 MIN | 10-16 FG | 5-6 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 3 STL | 2 BLK | 1 TO | 27 PTS | +1
Here’s the thing about Jeff Green: He has never been and never will be a solid top option for a team offensively since defenses can latch onto him when he’s the focal point. We’ve covered that a thousand times this year. That being said, against a team like Philadelphia — which doesn’t really have anyone capable of latching on to anyone — he can remind you how good he was alongside players like Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce. If he’s going to stick in Boston, the Celtics will need to get a better top offensive option next year.

Kelly Olynyk, C 35 MIN | 10-19 FG | 6-7 FT | 9 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 28 PTS | -12
Olynyk’s last few games have been tantalizing, and given nearly six months of offseason to obsess over them, we all may have convinced ourselves that Olynyk is DIRK WITH A HANDLE!!!!!!! by the time next season rolls around. He’s not, obviously, but he’s playing very well.

Rajon Rondo, PG 35 MIN | 4-8 FG | 0-1 FT | 11 REB | 14 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 8 PTS | +16
Rondo has to lead the league in double-doubles achieved without scoring double-digit points.

Avery Bradley, PG 42 MIN | 9-22 FG | 3-4 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 23 PTS | +6
Do you applaud Bradley for taking more 3-pointers (since it’s a more efficient shot than his long two-pointers) or do you penalize him for continuing to fire away despite shooting just 2-for-11?

Chris Johnson, SF 17 MIN | 3-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 8 PTS | -4
Best of both worlds on Johnson’s final shot: He drained it and got to look mega-clutch, but he stepped out of bounds (not really his fault) and didn’t damage Boston’s lottery odds.

Joel Anthony, C 14 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-2 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -7
Keep getting them checks, Joel.

Phil Pressey, PG 15 MIN | 0-1 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 2 PTS | -24
Just three assists today? I think it’s pretty evident that Rondo is HOLDING PHIL PRESSEY BACK.

Chris Babb, SG 6 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 3 PTS | -9
Babb has earned himself a training camp invite, but barring some kind of offseason miracle, it’s probably safe to assume that he won’t make the team next year if the Cs are at all competitive.

One Thing We Saw

  1. If only losses to bad teams counted positively toward lottery odds.

Follow Tom on Twitter: @Tom_NBA.

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