Big Baby grows up some during lockout

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The lockout is not easy on players. Taking away basketball has taken them out of their rhythms, soon will be taking away paychecks and left them wondering what is next. Nobody likes an uncertain future.

But for Glen Davis — Boston’s “Big Baby” — it has been more than that. The lockout took away the acceptance he has craved his whole life, and it forced him to be introspective and think himself in a new way.

Davis lets it all out in a fascinating interview handled very well by Jessica Camerato of CSNNE.com.

“I want to be a part of something and I want people to accept me so bad, I kind of got caught up in what other people think. Instead of pleasing myself and being the player I am, I wanted to please other people. And I couldn’t do that because I hadn’t come to grips with myself.”

The other people he tried to please, the people he wanted acceptance from where his teammates and coach, as well as the fans. Basketball was his social network, his second family, and it was where he got validation.

“I would have to say [it is important to me to please others] just because of the way people perceive me to be,” he said. “They perceive me to be this fat guy who’s kind of just making it in the league, he’s just here. I want people to like me. I want people to say, ‘Hey this boy can really play, he can play the game, he is a great player.’

“I just want people to love me, to love Big Baby. That’s why I try to have people remember me for my personality, for who I am as a person, outgoing, having fun. I just want to be accepted.

“That’s just something I’ve learned in the offseason — a lot of people might not like you. You have to love yourself because at the end of the day when it’s all said and done, nobody’s going to take care of Glen but Glen. It’s just all about growing up. I’ve grown a lot this offseason and hopefully it will help me with my career.”

That career will not go to China next, Davis said talks with a Chinese team got very serious but in the end he didn’t want to go.

But where it will go is not known — Davis is a free agent. He says he’d like to stay in Boston but realizes he could land just about anywhere next year. He’s come to grips with that, too. And he wants to bring a mature Big Baby to his next team.

Rockets were draining threes in the first half against Warriors in Game 6

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The Rockets were feeling it the first half in Game 6.

Playing with an energy the Warriors lacked at least in the first quarter), Houston defended well, pushed the ball in transition, and then they just drained three after three after three.

Eric Gordon started 4-of-4 from three and the team was 11-of-22 in the first half, which made up for the 11 turnovers and had them up 17 at one point and ahead by 10 after the first half.

Warriors’ Andre Iguodala out for Game 6

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Steve Kerr has been searching for a couple of games now for his fifth guy.

With Andre Iguodala out there is no Death/Hamptons 5 lineup and Kerr is looking for a fifth guy to partner with his four All-Stars. Kevon Looney is starting, Jordan Bell is showing potential but also makes some rookie plays, Nick Young has been bad enough that Kerr trusted Quin Cook more at the end of the last game (and Cook missed his looks).

Kerr is going to have to keep searching for a guy in Game 6 because Iguodala is out again.

The Warriors are not the team heading into Game 6 with the most significant injury woes, the Rockets are without Chris Paul. That and the fact the Warriors’ backs are against the wall is the reason they are heavy favorites in Game 6.

However, the Warriors have not been the same without Iguodala. He is a playmaker who can control the ball and settle things down, makes the right decision, get the player and ball movement the Warriors have strayed too much from back, plus is one of their best defenders on James Harden. Nobody else on the roster can do that.

And if Game 6 gets tight late, the Warriors are going to miss those skills. As they have in the last two games.

Marcus Smart on Game 7: ‘It’s not going to be pretty’

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Game 7s are not pretty basketball. Everyone is tight, shots clank off the front of the rim, and players tend to think rather than just react, sucking the flow out of the game. It’s a game for grinders.

Marcus Smart is good with that, and he told Chris Forsberg of ESPN the team is preparing for this style.

“It’s not going to be pretty. You got to be able to get down and get dirty. You can’t go out and try to look pretty. You have to be ready for a dogfight. We got to be ready to come up with our nose bloodied. We got to be ready to come out with our mouth bloodied. We have to come out ready to fight.”

If Boston is going to win this game, they will do so with the physical, smart, and unrelenting defense that carried them all season. That’s their grit. Without Kevin Love (out with a concussion) the Celtics have one less scorer to worry about, but things do not necessarily get dramatically easier — LeBron James is going to get his buckets, but can the Celtics keep George Hill, Kyle Korver, J.R. Smith and the rest of the role players from helping out with big nights of their own.

Which one of these teams is better positioned to win a grinding, sloppy game? Who is willing to dive on the floor and give that little extra effort? A case can be made either way, but Sunday night will decide it.

Report: Warriors’ Patrick McCaw cleared, will be available for Game 6

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We haven’t seen Golden State’s Patrick McCaw on an NBA court since March 31, when he was undercut by Sacramento’s Vince Carter and took an ugly, nasty spill.

McCaw is finally cleared by the team doctors and will be active on Saturday night for Game 6 against Houston, reports Shams Charania of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.

The Golden State Warriors are planning to activate swingman Patrick McCaw for Game 6 of the Western Conference finals against the Houston Rockets on Saturday night, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

McCaw, on paper, would help the Warriors — he’s a 6’5″ switchable defender who can provide some offense in transition. That’s especially true if Andre Iguodala is out for Game 6 (his status is a game-time decision). McCaw played about 17 minutes a night for the Warriors during the regular season.

However, the idea of taking a second-year player who has not been on a court in six weeks and throwing him into Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals — a win-or-go-fishing game for Golden State — is risky, at best. Don’t expect him to get on the court unless this is a blowout.