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Your Morning Dump… Where the dreaded “T” word isn’t green tinted

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.

Anyway, we squeezed six competitive, interesting years out of what was supposed to be a three-year plan featuring Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Ray Allen, and now here we are, Boston’s Forgotten Men in this City of Champions.

We’re not stupid. We know what you’re saying. We’re stinky, but not stinky enough. You would have been happier if we had gone 0-82. Then you assume we get Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker and all our problems would be solved. But to you, we’re worthless. We’re supposed to lose in order to make you feel better.

How do you think that makes us feel?

See, here’s the deal. All these 21st century championships have completely distorted the sports consciousness around here. And those sports talk shows, all the Dennises, Callahans, Minihanes, Touchers, Riches, Greshes, Zolaks, Felgers, Mazzes, Holleys, and Salks — and that goes for you, too, Tanguay — have convinced people that every season for every sports team is worthless if it doesn’t end in a championship. But in the real world it doesn’t work that way.

In the real world just about everybody goes home empty-handed, every year. There are 122 professional sports franchises encompassed in the NFL, NHL, NBA, and Major League Baseball, and each year only four of them can win. No championship should ever be taken for granted. Ask the people of Cleveland. You think when the Browns won the 1964 NFL championship anyone thought a half-century would come and go with no Cleveland team winning a major sports championship? Impossible.

Boston Globe - Celtic pride is alive and well (Bob Ryan)

The great Bob Ryan is technically retired from the Boston Globe but every once in a while he’ll write.  And from those handful of times he will write about basketball and the Celtics and when he does it tends to grab ones attention (he is in the basketball Hall of Fame, after all).  In his column today, he lashes out at the thought of the Celtics outright tanking the season as well as the local Boston media (radio/TV personalities basically) about their routine (and only) Celtics discussion of tanking.  This is what has happened with all of the ridiculous amount of combined success the Boston teams have had in the past decade or so.  Fans, media, we all get greedy.  We expect a title, or at least our team to be in the title discussion every year.  If a team is not, then it’s pointless to talk about them or follow them.

Right now the only thing worth talking about, or following the Celtics for, is to hope they tank and get a lottery pick.  A huge part of that is the way the NBA system is set up and, more importantly, how NBA contenders historically win and stay contenders for years.  Basically, you NEED at least one if not two of the top players in the league.  Just go back and look at not only the title winners but the teams that remain in the discussion.  Sure, there is a 2004 Detroit Pistons team sprinkled in here and there but those are just as rare as actually winning the lottery or better yet, winning it in the right year and/or getting lucky by drafting the right player.  Ryan goes on:

The issue, as we understand it, is that we are supposed to — what’s the euphemism? — “tank” this season. We’re supposed to go out there every night with the intention of losing. Sorry, uh-uh, not gonna happen. Nor should it.

First of all, it’s no guarantee of anything. We had the worst record once upon a time and we wound up with Nos. 3 and 6. If you want more detail, consult a Mr. Pitino down there in Louisville. We stunk it out another time and got the fifth pick. In addition to which, do you really think the bosses threw all this money at Brad Stevens and then asked him to perfect his losing technique?

No, we’re gonna give it our best shot, and whatever happens, happens. We’ve got a couple of young Keeper Bigs in Jared Sullinger and Kelly Olynyk. Jordan Crawford is anything but boring. We play hard. We’re trying to earn your respect. We’re professionals. We’ve got dignity.

If you stick with us, we will surprise you every now and then. Not many teams can put seven or eight guys in double figures, but we can. We’re not great, but we’re not hopeless, either. And as far as the future is concerned, we’ve got an additional first-round pick from the Nets and the Clippers in each of the next five years.

No, we’re not the Red Sox, Bruins or Patriots, and more power to them. We’re rooting for them, too. But don’t be distracted or overwhelmed by all the noise out there. We’re not heading to a 2014 championship, but we are members in good standing of the greatest basketball league in the world and we will do our best to give you a show.

Finally, please remember you are living in the most blessed sports town in America. These are the Good Old Days, and that includes us. We’re just a little behind schedule.

The Celtics have only really gone one season from start to finish where the goal was to tank.  That was the 1996-1997 M.L. Carr special.  The 2006-2007 season did NOT start out that way, but once Paul Pierce was injured in December after the Celtics got off to a horrible start (and then Tony Allen got hurt, etc.) well things just avalanched from there.  But that team began the season with every intention of trying to make the playoffs.  This team is too well coached and has too many players with things to prove whom are all buying in to the coach’s team concept.  Don’t expect them to tank either.  The good news is that the Celtics still have a great ownership and are the “envy of every front office executive who craves a rebuilding challenge.”  Danny Ainge is one of the best at his profession so it will be interesting to see just what he and the front office does to make “Celtic Pride” return to contention.  I just don’t think they’ll be driving those green tanks on the way back.

The rest of the links:

ESPN Boston – From Gino to Giannis time

Boston Globe – Inconsistent Celtics crumble to lowly Bucks | Celtics are a little short handed | Grizzlies try to find a way to the top of the West (Sunday Notes)

Boston Herald – C’s shot at division lead lost | Notebook: Both Stevens, Ainge see future in it for Rondo | Notebook: Blueprint has Pacers built to soar in East (Sunday Notes)

CSNNE – Bucks take down Celtics, 92-85 | In the bonus: Bradley’s improved jumper | Good, Bad, Ugly: Bucks snap skid, down C’s | Blakely: Sullinger needs to keep shooting 3s

MassLive – Despite Jared Sullinger’s big night, Celtics bow to struggling Bucks | Jared Sullinger’s presence makes everything better for Boston Celtics | Rajon Rondo will make a really good coach one day, according to Boston Celtics’ Brad Stevens and Danny Ainge

WEEI – Celtics allow Bucks to snap 11-game losing streak

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  • vitamin d

    Exactly. I’m irritated by the fans who are hating on Danny Ainge or even the players for not having all losses right now. That’s not how the game of basketball is supposed to be played. It just so happens that in this league, losing is rewarded. It doesn’t mean our own Celtic players should intentionally lose games.

  • Chuck Da buck

    It’s hard to tank and win look at okc they gave gotten lucky in the draft and hit big on a few players and still haven’t won I think the celtics should try and go as far as they can u never know what will happen. If we loose now what happens if a few stars go own or demarcus cousins gets sick of sac town and wants out and we could get him but we have an awful record u never know things can happen in a season that could turn our rebuild around quick.

  • Thatguy

    Celtics were never tanking. Like vitamin below me, I’m annoyed from Celtic fans(in particular) saying Tank for Wiggins, this-this-and-that. Bucks, Jazz, whoever else can tank if they want to. We’re a decently talented team with an All-Star point guard coming back soon in the weaker Eastern conference. Lets make a little noise and go down swinging. Who says Wiggins/Randle or anyone makes an impact?(Hope the best for them, there’s just no guarantee.) Play like there’s no tomorrow. I have faith in our coach, players.(And in Danny Ainge, that Nets trade is looking better and better by the day. Which also hurts to say because Pierce is my favorite player ever.)

  • swissflix

    Tanking is not an option for a franchise with any self-esteem. And certainly not for the Boston Celtics. I was thinking about tanking while watching the Cavs game. Irving looked horrible and i realized how many true franchise player there have been in the draft for the last 3 years. None. Paul George MIGHT develop into a Paul Pierce type of player. But how many top 10 draft picks have been disappointing? A great many.
    We have young players to develop. I think the way Sullinger is playing currently he could be an All-Star reserve. I hope Avery stays, but if he doesn’t he will make for a good trade. Green has been playing well lately. If he can work on his consistency, he will be a piece for the future. And then there is still Rondo.

  • bill_nair

    Even without tanking you can still get a franchise player anywhere in the draft. All stars have been taken in the 2nd round (rare.) PP was the 10th pick (as well as Paul George as swiss mentioned.) We’ll get our franchise player/go to scorer in due time.