Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
“He went there to help them win a championship, and they didn’t do that this year,’’ Lucille said. “It bothered him so much that he could not play. He felt like he let the Boston team down and the community down, so I could believe he’s going back to Boston. He’s not in a place to be traded or anything like that.’’
Lucille added O’Neal hasn’t indicated to her what he plans to do.
“I don’t know because Shaquille has got such passion for the game,’’ Lucille said. “(Retirement) we’ve always told him that’s up to him. Whatever decision he makes, we’re still going to be behind him 100 percent.’’
There you go… Shaq's mom… who hasn't spoken to her son about this… says she could believe he's going back.
Bam. What else do you need?
Yes, Doc and Danny have been saying they think Shaq is done. But did they talk to mom about it?
No, I didn't think so.
In all seriousness… there's no way in hell Shaq makes it through a whole season. Even if he doesn't officially retire, the C's could buy him out and then give him a ring in March. If the big fella's got 3 months of ball in his legs, then we might as well make it the last 3 months of the season.
On Page 2: the Yankees might provide a glimpse into the Celtics' future
Now the Yankees are bleeding, and as a Red Sox fan, you love it.
However, as a Celtics fan, maybe it should give you some pause.
Listen, I’m not saying these scenarios are identical.
Baseball isn’t basketball. The Yankees aren’t the Celtics. Jeter and Posada aren’t Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett (although there is a slight Big Baby/Bartolo resemblance). Apparently, Posada’s problems with Girardi go back long before this season, and the Big Three’s relationship with Doc and Danny has for the most part been copacetic. Jeter’s issues intensified over the negotiating table, and that’s something that the Celtics likely won’t have to deal (or not on that level). I’m not saying that this is Final Destination 7 and that everything we’re witnessing with the Yankees is an identical preview of the Celtics’ inevitable future.
I’m just saying that this is the risk you take with aging superstars.
It's possible that kind of drama could play out in Boston. I'm sure it's already happened to some degree. The difference is Ray can still shoot and Pierce can still get to the rim. Hell, Pierce was blowing by LeBron James a lot in the Heat series and dunking on everyone during the regular season. KG can still do his thing but not as much as everyone else. But there's not much to worry about with KG because he's the most unselfish player around.
So it's possible. At some point, Rondo is going to have to take over and the Ray/Paul combo will be the second and third options. Or they'll be on the bench for some key stretches. It's up to them to recognize their declining skills… something that's very hard for an athlete to do.
We'll just have to wait and see. Will these guys accept their reduced roles? They all know they don't have much time left. But do thy know how much ability they have left as well?
The rest of the links:
CSNNE: Draft Primer: Tweeners | Celtics lost ubuntu after trading Perkins | ESPN Boston: Ray, Russell stump for Obama | Forbes: Doc now highest paid NBA coach | Globe: Celtics free agents, keep him, or let him go (slideshow) | Re-tooling won't be an easy fix | Frank gets permission to talk to Warriors