Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big story line. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
“My love for them hasn’t changed,” Rivers said of the Celtics. “For me, it was time for me to change. When you’re somewhere for nine years, you don’t think whether it’s the right or wrong decision, you think it’s the right decision for you at that time. But as far as wanting them to do well, that will never change. Unless they’re playing me.
“Other than that, love Danny (Ainge), love (owner Steve Pagliuca), that whole group, and I just want them to do well. I really do. I love what they’ve done. I think the turnaround in four years starting with hiring Brad and then going from … (Ainge) and (assistant general manager) Mike Zarren have done the best job I’ve seen in sports in a long, long time of rebuilding. Maybe ever.”
A few weeks back, I did a Saturday dump on the new Celtics uniforms which were unofficially revealed in a tweet by Panini America because there was quite literally nothing else to talk about.
Ten days later, the Celtics traded Isaiah Thomas for Kyrie Irving.
And finally, it feels like things are slipping back into their late off-season slumber.
The lead article today? It’s Doc Rivers praising the Celtics rebuild from afar.
Of course, any mention of Rivers is likely to bring out a certain amount of schadenfreude regarding Doc’s desire to avoid a rebuild, the current status of the Celtics, his desire to wear a GM’s hat, and his current focus on coaching.
But you know what? If Doc’s happy in Los Angeles, that’s great. Because there’s no way the Celtics are where they are now if he stays in Boston.
If there was one thing absolutely crystal clear from Doc’s early years in Boston, he was nowhere near as good as Brad Stevens when it comes to maximizing player potential. Doc has his strengths: He’s a good motivator. But at the same time, it’s hard to imagine him leading a team of scrappy underdogs to an unexpected playoff berth.
Was Doc ‘disloyal’ for ditching the Celtics? Meh. Kind of, but this isn’t a marriage. When I was younger I could do that whole ‘you’re dead to me’ thing when a player (or coach) ditched “my” team for greener pastures, but I don’t know, it takes a lot more than that to make me mad about sports these days.
And that brings us around to this:
Page 2: IT’s in Cleveland
Thomas’ work back to the court will be overseen by Dr. James Rosneck, a renowned hip specialist at the Cleveland Clinic who works with the Cavs. Dr. Richard Parker, the team’s lead doctor and an orthopedic surgeon at the Clinic, will of course also be involved.
The Cavs want to see how Thomas responds after a week, and then through the month of September leading into training camp before they determine a timetable. Thomas elected not to have surgery and told ESPN this week surgery was not the best course of action. All indications point to Thomas missing at least a portion of the season.
It’s a bit amusing to see that the Cavs’ treatment plan is almost identical to Boston’s–so much for the notion that Boston had either misdiagnosed or underestimated the extent of IT’s injury.
On the other hand, this seems to be good news about IT’s treatment: Hopefully neither Rosneck nor Parker let Thomas rush back to the court–regardless of what Thomas, or the team, would like to see.
Thomas should have access to excellent rehab services in Cleveland, and hopefully that continues wherever he ends up playing next season.
Does it sting a bit to see IT in Cavs gear? Of course it does. But, hey, life goes on. I hope IT has a great year with Cleveland, I hope he gets paid, and I hope that in time what he thinks about when he thinks about Boston is that it’s the place that gave him back his career.
And, come on, Cavs gear aside, you gotta admit, this is pretty funny:
The rest of the links