He didn't land the honor, but Celtics second-year shooting guard Avery Bradley was one of six Eastern Conference players nominated for the final Player of the Month award of the season.
Bradley, who averaged 15.1 points while shooting 52 percent from the floor in 15 April appearances, lost out to New York's Carmelo Anthony. Atlanta's Josh Smith and Joe Johnson, Indiana's David West, and Miami's LeBron James were also nominated.
Just another step in Avery Bradley's march to national notoriety.
Whenever I mention to other people who haven't been watching the Celtics as closely that Bradley is a great defender and a difference maker for Boston, they scoff. But time after time, after the Celtics have played their teams, they become believers.
Avery Bradley is the real deal. That is the exact opposite of what I was saying in January. But in a matter of months, he has been unreal. If the Celtics had acquired him in a trade at the same time something clicked with him, the basketball world would have been abuzz with "Linsanity-lite" type of nicknames for Bradley. But because he was already here, his emergence has flown under the radar.
Now he's a Player of the Month candidate and getting ready to show the Atlanta Hawks what's up. Because now, every one of the 5 starters on the floor for the Celtics is dangerous. You can't sleep on any of them, because every single one of them will burn you somehow.
Fired up for tomorrow yet?
Related links: WEEI: Avery Bradley is ready for playoffs
On Page 2: The Big 4's group interview with CSNNE
The Big 4 sat down for a rare group interview (in fact, I don't know if I've seen all four of them sit for something like this). They talked about the possible end of the road for this group, the doubters, Doc Rivers, how lucky Rondo feels to be part of the group, and more.
Wait till you get to KG and the rest of the guys talking about the Garden: "This place is as electric as it gets." You'll get pumped.
It's almost 12 minutes long, but it's worth the watch.
The rest of the links:
Herald: Matchup by committee | Fading hopes for Ray Allen in game 1 | KG not done yet | CSNNE: The "Celtics Way" starts with mentoring at the top | WEEI: KG and Josh Smith: The non-center matchup | Sean Grande's awards ballot | Allen's status in doubt for playoffs | Globe: Allen still hobbling, availability uncertain | Eastern Conference capsules | Western Conference capsules | Globe staff predictions