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.
The schedule-makers did few favors for the Boston Celtics over the first two months of the 2013-14 season. They threw the team a bone at Christmas time.
For the first time in six seasons, the Celtics will not be part of the NBA’s jam-packed Christmas Day slate and instead are enjoying a rare five-day holiday break.
Chris Forsberg-Celtics Will Enjoy Holiday Break
I don’t know about you guys/gals, but for me, Christmas over the past 6 or so years has meant scheduling my day around the C’s game. Sure, that may sound selfish to some, but my family had become accustomed to me generally meeting up with them before or after Boston’s Christmas Day game. Unless of course we decided to watch together, which did happen on occasion. Well, for the first time in a long time, C’s fans will not be able to enjoy watching their beloved team on Christmas Day.
I must say it’s quite ironic that Boston finally gets a full five days off, now that vets like Pierce & Garnett, (more on them below) who really could have benefited from the extended layoff, are gone. Not to mention it was always quite an honor to be one of the teams Stern and company chose to include on the holiday schedule. But the current roster of C’s really do not seem too concerned about being left off the Xmas schedule. Coach Stevens thinks it will be a good chance for his guys to remember what the “real reason” behind December 25th is.
First-year Celtics coach Brad Stevens said the break is a chance “to sit back and reflect on how fortunate we are and how lucky we are to do what we do. The chance to compete and coach and play together, to me, it’s another season and a reason to be thankful.
“I certainly would love for the Celtics to be playing on Christmas Day, but I don’t think anybody in [the Celtics organization] is going to mind being with their family and taking the day for the real reason of why we’re doing it and spending time together.”
As a fan, I could personally take it or leave it. But for some of the players, like vet journeyman Gerald Wallace, this will be the first time in a decade or more that they have spent Christmas Day with their families. I can only imagine would it must be like year after year, spending Christmas dinner at a hotel and not being able to see your children/family members open gifts. But I guess it’s just part of “the grind”. Still, you’d better believe Crash will be happy to see some of his family on Christmas morning for the first time in 17 years.
Gerald Wallace is back in his native Alabama, somewhere he hasn’t spent Christmas since he was a 17-year-old senior at Childersburg High School. Five NBA teams (Sacramento, Charlotte, Portland, Brooklyn, Boston), a total of 839 games (between college and the pros), four children (Daryn, Malliyah, Mya and Kennedy) and what must feel like a lifetime later, the 31-year-old Wallace finally has the chance to head home for the holidays.
“It’s going to be exciting,” Wallace said. “I haven’t been home in a while, and I get to see family and friends around the holidays, spend time with my kids. I’m going to enjoy it.”
Page 2: Pierce, Nets continue to spiral downward
When the Brooklyn Nets added Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Jason Terry & Andrei Kirlenko over the summer, expectations for the team were at an all-time high. Well after yet another loss, another possible injury and some very concerning postgame comments from Jason Kidd, there is very little holiday cheer in Brooklyn.
Jason Kidd says the Nets have gotten comfortable with losing.
— Stefan Bondy (@NYDNInterNets) December 24, 2013
The Nets were pummeled by the Indiana Pacers last night, 103-86, in a game where Paul Pierce was ejected for this flagrant two foul on George Hill:
Brooklyn was booed by the home crowd last night, and both Paul Pierce & Kevin Garnett left the arena without talking to the media. As (obviously) a fan of both Truth & Ticket, it pains me to see them have to go through this. However, as Celtics fans all know, these are two guys that both have been through quite a bit of adversity in their careers. If anyone can find some way to pull this team together, it’s Pierce & Garnett. The injury bug has been extremely unkind to the Nets, completely compounding matters. Once Brooklyn gets healthy, don’t be surprised to see them start to turn things around. But I’m not convinced that Jason Kidd is the right guy to coach this team. I personally think he jumped into the head coaching job much too quickly. I think he’d have been better off starting as an assistant to a more experienced coach, and gradually working his way up the ranks. Time will tell.
The rest of the links: