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.
According to team president Rich Gotham, approximately “91 or 92 percent” of the season ticket base — the same as last season — has re-upped.“We’re coming back with over 90 percent of our season ticket-holders, which is a good number,” said Gotham. “It’s above the league average, and it’s in line with past seasons for us. We have a loyal fan base, and we’ve quietly built a young nucleus with Jeff (Green), Avery (Bradley), Jared (Sullinger) and Rondo. The fans see that. Those are players the fans like.“This is in line with last year,” he added. “We’re lucky. We have a base that loves our team, and intellectually understands that we’re not always going to have the same result, but also understand why. This year we were without Rondo in the playoffs, and they understand that doesn’t make it a bad season because we were knocked out earlier than planned. That makes it a reality check for us. We just didn’t have all of the players on the court that we needed.”The uncertainty for next season, with the returns of Pierce and Kevin Garnett on hold, has apparently created more anxiety in the basketball operations office than the ticket office.“We’re hopefully preparing for the fact that we will be (competing),” Gotham said. “Hopefully we’ll be able to include this team, keep key players, keep Kevin and put players around him. But it’s our job to also think about what could be a worst-case scenario, and kept the best team over time. We have to look at every angle.
“We’re evaluating everything right now,” said Gotham. “There’s a lot of moving parts. Paul’s contract, whether or not Kevin does another tour of duty. The draft, free agency. It’s hard to focus on any one thing in a vacuum. They’re all inter-mingled, so in the next 30 days we really have to think everything through from every possible angle. But it’s too early to say.”
Boston Herald – Ray Allen imprint felt
Celtics President Rich Gotham had an interesting and possibly telling quote in Mark Murphy’s piece. This could clearly be looking too much into what was perhaps just a passing sentence in a discussion, but he did single out ‘Kevin’ and not ‘Paul.’ “Hopefully we’ll be able to include this team, keep key players, keep Kevin and put players around him.”
Again, KG is stressed there and building players around Ticket. The only specific mention of Pierce is “Paul’s contract.” So, we’re at the offseason limbo phase where we’re over-analyzing a single quote (ok maybe just I am). But this shouldn’t really come as a surprise, nor should Pierce’s departure if it leads to that. Ever since his post-game interview following the Game 6 loss to the Knicks, it’s seemed like Pierce is gone, just nobody is sure how exactly. Gotham is usually measured and professional when it comes to his media appearances, so he’s likely just being as honest as he can. I do appreciate that they are carefully evaluating every path to the “next” team as opposed to just making moves to placate the fans.
As he stated earlier, there is already a 90-plus percent season ticket renewal rate (granted as a season ticket holder they do require that you renew around February, for what it’s worth). But the Celtics absolutely need to do this. The fans are smart and they also get emotionally attached to their favorite players (this is a good thing, it shows the passion). But I think as fans, we all understand and can accept any ‘plan’ that would lead to being a true contender for Banner 18. Being stuck in mediocrity is something we experienced for a long, long time in the post Big Three Era. I think we all learned from that mess. I don’t think “THAT GUY” is out there yet for the C’s (well realistically anyway), and Paul Millsap, while being ‘Plan A’ is a nice, solid player, is no franchise player. Gotham is saying all the right things, let’s hope they stick to that plan, whatever it is.
The beginning piece of Murphy’s column discusses just how much Ray Allen is missed in the community. Say what you want about Ray, but Murphy outlines just how much (and it was a lot) that Ray did give back to the community. A lot of times these things get overlooked but they really shouldn’t. I understand what Ray did to fans was a punch to the groin (and I felt it just as much) but I always love to see players, especially star players give their time back, especially to kids.
In the Globe’s Sunday Notes linked below, Gary Washburn tells us to not be surprised if the Celtics draft a backup PG with their pick (likely either Shane Larkin or Dennis Schroeder), mainly to run the pick and roll, as well as to have a viable backup to Rondo who will be recovering from his ACL surgery.
The Rest of the links:
Boston Globe Sunday Notes – Rick Barry realizes his strong opinions may have cost him shot at NBA coaching job | ESPN Boston - Here’s the plan: Cleaning house