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.
“It’s a place I’ll always go back to,” he said. “Who knows? I could be working for them one day.”
Asked about Grousbeck’s comment, Pierce said: “You know what? Wyc has been one of the best owners. At a time when things weren’t going well, they put the team together to give me a chance. Everything has been professional. I wanted to stay in Boston, (but) both of us knew we came to a crossroads. We had a good understanding. That’s why there’s nothing but love between me and the owners of the Celtics organization.”
Pierce’s connection with the rest of the people in that building, though, may be beyond words.
“It’s too hard to foresee it now,” he said, after some hesitation, about his anticipation for tonight. “Of course memories are going to be passing through my head. I played so many games in one building. That’s something you can’t script.”
And Garnett, naturally, is at his best operating without a script.
“I don’t even know. I do know that emotions probably will be high because of the success we had together in Boston,” he said. “We had some really good years there. It’s going to forever be embedded. People in this era will remember the last six years we were there. They’ll always remember that era.
“Bostonians and New Englanders, the people of Mass., they always remember that and they never forget their favorites. We were fortunate to be part of that whole transformation. Some things are forever, man.”
Boston Herald - Returning Heroes
Forever. It’s a word associated with a handful of things that hold true in some ways but many times does not. Sometimes you think a friendship, relationship or passion will last longer than time itself, but often falls short. In the grand scheme of life, sports can have an irrational and profound impact on many people. When there’s so much other “real world” issues going on to cause so much stress and anxiety, sports can often be a relief from everyday life and provide us with incredible amounts of joy and happiness. It can also send us into brief or prolonged states of anger and sadness, but in the “sports” sort of way. The main aspect in all of it that gets us so drawn in are those special people that play for our teams and take it to that next level.
Paul Pierce was a treasure that fell into the laps of Celtics fans (and Rick Pitino) when they were in need of someone to seriously root for since the days long gone by of Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish. He provided that initial glimmer of hope that just maybe one day the green could be back in the NBA’s brightest spotlight… back at the top. Kevin Garnett became available at the perfect time and when he got here he not only had the NBA spotlight turned back to the northeast, he shattered it, screamed, and brought his own massive Batman-like spotlight and turned it back in the faces of the rest of the NBA to announce that the C’s were not only back, but they’re about to own the whole damn league.
Sometimes in sports, trades are just trades. Just names of good players changing laundry and we get excited at the change, the potential of the potential. Other times, like when KG got here, it sends shockwaves throughout the city, the league and the entire sportsworld altogether. The New Big Three Era brought back the powerhouse approach and caused an avalanche of teams to try and replicate it (LA with Gasol, Phoenix with Shaq, New York with Amare, Miami with LeBron). They were immediately on the covers of every publication, had special SportsCenter spots and became a traveling rock star band that everyone wanted to see… until they came into your building and owned it.
The only unfortunate aspect of it all was that it didn’t last long enough. It would have been an incredible run if they had a decade to rule, like Bird, McHale and Parish did. But it likely wouldn’t have had the same nuclear, immediate effect that it did. It was unbelievable to experience as a fan. I’m a few years younger than Pierce and KG, but close enough that I sort of grew up with them from the time they were in high school until now. I’m very thankful to have had them carve their names into Celtics lore and be witness to it. They fit this organization and this city perfectly. Today they make their return for just one day, but in the minds and hearts of Celtics fans everywhere, they’ll be in green forever. Thank you, Paul. Thank you, Kevin.
On Page 2, the Celtics plan on separate video tributes for Pierce, KG
Fans have come to expect it, and Garnett and Pierce know it’s coming. It will arrive early, perhaps during the game’s first timeout or at the end of the first quarter.
Necks will crane toward the sky as the music starts and the highlights begin to roll. Applause from a sellout crowd of 18,624 will build to a roaring crescendo. Fans will stand and their cheers will rain down, washing over their spotlighted hero.
This will happen not just once Sunday but twice, and separately for each player. And in each of those emotional moments, Pierce and Garnett will no doubt gaze up at the banner that they helped hang in 2008, and then around the sea of green-clad fans who were there, with them through everything.
Boston Globe - Celtics’ video tributes take plenty of planning
The Globe does a great job of highlighting just how these video tributes are made, especially in the case for today’s versions for Pierce and Garnett. I love how Doc and Eddie House have asked for copies of it. I’m willing to bet P and KG will as well.
The rest of the links:
ESPN Boston - Practice: C’s ponder line-up tweak vs Nets
CSNNE - Pierce and Garnett embedded in Celtics history | Celtics may shuffle lineup vs stacked Nets | Trash will be on the menu when KG returns | Rookie Diary: Olynyk vs. bed frame | Heinsohn: Rondo will have a big impact on Green
MssLive - Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce’s influence on Boston Celtics still evident | The playoffs? Boston Celtics head coach Brad Stevens thinks it’s ‘pretty ridiculous’ his team is only four games out