In Boston, they assume that “Benedict Allen” has a heart two sizes too small, or he wouldn’t have turned his back on the Celtics this summer and joined the hated Heat.
But life is never that clean and simple. Despite all the sniping back and forth between between Miami and Boston.
Ray Allen admitted that he doesn’t really know what to expect or exactly how he’ll feel when the Heat open the season Tuesday night against those very same Boston Celtics. From CSNNE.com.
“You always have so many different types of emotions when the season starts,” Allen said. “Obviously for me, it’s so many different ones. I’m excited for these guys having spent time around them over the last two, three months, getting to know them and their families. I’m happy for them that they won, but at the same time they beat me and put us (Celtics) out. I understand the emotions that Boston will feel watching the ceremony but at the same time I’m excited for these guys.”
The Heat are going to get their rings in front of the Celtics, then the Heat will begin their title defense against the team they beat in seven games in the Eastern Conference finals.
Allen wants to beat his old team. He wants another ring — he jumped to Miami because he thought he had a better shot at one there and he could play a bigger role in getting it. Allen doesn’t like to lose.
But don’t think this is a grudge match Tuesday night.
“These guys are my friends,” Allen said. “You guys think that I have some type of animosity or bad blood against them; I don’t. I’ve said it time and time again, we’ve shared probably the most special thing you can do in sports … going all the way to the top. That’s always going to be number one closest to my heart. When I see Paul, I’m not going to be angry at him or anybody else. I’m happy. I’m excited. I look forward to seeing all these guys.”
Allen is going to be disappointed because I don’t think Kevin Garnett wants to come over and sing “Kumbaya” after the game.
Tommy Hawkins passed away recently at the age of 80.
The former NBA player was the first black athlete to earn All-America honors in basketball at Notre Dame (he still holds the school’s total rebounds record), was drafted in the first round, and went on to have a 10-year NBA career playing for the Minneapolis/Los Angeles Lakers as well as the Cincinnati Royals. Los Angeles fans may also remember him as the long time director of communications for the Los Angeles Dodgers after his playing days ended.
The NBA put together this well done video look back at Hawkins’ career.
Isaiah Thomas said he expects to be ready for the Celtics’ training camp next month. The guard’s All-NBA season came to an early end in the playoffs when he aggravated a labral tear in his right hip initially suffered back in March. At least the injury did not require surgery.
Players are also about the worst judges of when they will recover from an injury. They pretty much all think they are invincible and will be healthy faster than doctors predict.
Coaches tend to be more pragmatic. Take Boston’s Brad Stevens, who told Chris Mannix on The Vertical Podcast that tests in a couple of weeks will show if Thomas is ready for camp.
“He has another follow-up and another scan in the early part of September. Obviously, it’s been a lot of appropriate rest, a lot of rehab. There have been some good strides here certainly in the last month or few weeks, but we’re not going to know that until after that early September timeframe.”
The Celtics are understandably going to be cautious with Thomas, while Thomas wants to prove he is healthy and has no ill effects from the injury as he enters a contract year (one where he expects to get PAID). Also, the Celtics could use him in camp as they start to figure out how he and Gordon Hayward can share playmaking duties.
Still, from the outset, the timelines have suggested he should be ready for camp in late September. Coaches are just cautious on these things by nature.
LeBron James has four NBA MVP trophies in his case. (Does he keep that case in his home in Akron or the one in Los Angeles… that’s a question for another day.) Only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (six) and Michael Jordan (five) have more.
Could LeBron James add a fifth to his case this season?
Allen Iverson said yes at last weekend’s Big3 playoffs in Seattle.
LeBron was fourth in preseason odds to win the MVP at 15/2, behind Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, and Kawhi Leonard.
To me, LeBron could be a good bet. If/when Kyrie Irving is traded, the chances of LeBron getting the MVP go up. If LeBron puts up impressive numbers (again) and leads a depleted Cavaliers team to a top two seed in the East, he is certainly going to be in consideration. And should be.
It’s a long season, and personally, I think you need to get midway through the season before seriously considering the year-end awards. But history says LeBron will be in the mix, and Allen Iverson could be proven prophetic.
With the cooler-than-I-expected solar eclipse on Monday came a lot of bad solar eclipse jokes on Twitter. Because that’s what Twitter does. Especially the NBA Twitterverse. We knew a lot of “where on the flat earth will Kyrie Irving watch the eclipse?” jokes were coming.
There were a couple of good ones, however.
Appropriately, the Phoenix Suns won the day.
One personal favorite here, an old meme that never goes out of style.