2014 not so kind to Celtics

Since the Calendar changed to 2014 the Celtics are still in search of their first win. What looked like a promising beginning to a season that began with very low expectations , our beloved Celtics are now struggling and looking like the squad many predicted them to be when this season began. At 0-8 on the year and losers of 12 of their last 13 , they now find themselves with the 3rd most losses in the NBA and well on their way to a high lottery pick (hopefully). It’s very difficult as a lifelong diehard fan of this team to watch them losing game after game , while in the back of my mind i know its probably the best thing for them in their rebuilding process.  With our all-star PG returning within a week , will the team continue on this spiral of losing or will he be the spark they need to push them back up the standings and into a playoff spot? Will Danny continue to make moves as the trading deadline approaches and help them clear future cap space for a run at some free agents? Will Rondo be available to teams? It will certainly be fun to watch as we get into trade season. Stay tuned Celtics fans as this will surely be an interesting month or so even if the losing continues.

 

 

 

Celtics Forward Jared Sullinger Arrested On Domestic Assault Charges

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Boston Celtics forward Jared Sullinger was arrested on domestic violence charges stemming from an incident on Saturday night according to Waltham police.

The incident occurred on Saturday evening and sullinger turned himself in on Tuesday around 6 a.m. ET Sullinger is charged with assault and battery, malicious destruction of property and witness intimidation.

Media reports indicate that Sullinger appeared in Waltham district court on Tuesday and entered a plea of not guilty and was released on $5,000 bail and is scheduled to appear back in court on September 19.

After being a highly touted draft pick in 2012 Sullinger had seen back problems cause his draft stock to drop and so much so he fell to the Celtics who selected him with their 21st pick in the 2012 draft. Entering the season Sullinger looked like an odd man out but quickly emerged himself as a key player for the Celtics and played his way into the starting lineup but back issues forced Sullinger out of the lineup and out for the season.

For the Celtics this comes as no good news with the rebuilding phase among us and a new era ready to begin and Sullinger being a big part of it this is a tough position for the Celtics on the court and off with Sullinger being a fan favorite and popular amongst his teammates but now we must wait and see what will happen next.

Adam Rioux – Celtics Insider  –  TitleTown Sports

Host of “The Jungle” at TitleTown Sports Radio Network

The Legacy Of Paul Pierce and Why #34 Will Live On Forever

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15 seasons ago we as Celtics Fans sat back and after years of uncertainty and losing season’s headed into the 1998 draft with the 10th overall pick and with a solid draft class looked to capture someone that could help get the Franchise back on the right foot, and boy that’s what they did.  The Celtics selected with their 10th overall pick Paul Pierce who was highly touted in that draft and was expected to be a top 5 pick but slipped into the Celtics arms and hit the ground running and used the fact that teams ahead of Boston passed up on him as motivation that made Pierce a lethal force in the NBA.

Growing up in Inglewood California the last team Pierce was excited to play for was the Celtics and was quoted as saying he hated the Celtics growing up Pierce grew up rooting for the Lakers the Celtics arched rival. But early on in his career he learned the reason why the rivalry was so rich on the Celtics side meeting guys like Bill Russell, Bob Cousy, Red Auerbach, John Havlicek  and an assortment of others who instilled what Celtic pride is all about and what it really means to embrace the Celtic Jersey and its heritage. From that point on Pierce played with the Passion that came with wearing the Green and held the responsibility that came with it as well.

After coming out of the gate and scoring over 18ppg in his first two seasons the potential for Pierce was there for and he used it to the best of his ability Pierce became one of the most feared scorer’s in the league, going toe to toe night in and night out with the league’s best and cementing himself as a future hall of famer. Along the way the Celtics had minor success and made the playoffs but never had the talent to make serious headway in the pursuit of a championship in Pierce’s early years.

Aside from his stellar play on the court Pierce showed extreme loyalty to the Celtics by sticking it out through the rough years and turning down the opportunities to flee Boston and cash in and have a better chance to win a championship Pierce stayed and vowed to be a Celtic for life. That statement in itself is a testament to Pierce’s character in a nutshell. For 15 seasons we watched him gut out games and sacrifice his mind and body night in and night out.

After a wretched 2006-2007 campaign where the Celtics went 24-58 and it looked again like Pierce would go another year without attaining the ultimate goal all NBA players wish to accomplish and win a Championship. Heading into the offseason GM Danny Ainge was pressed to make changes and changes is what he did.

Ainge went ahead and orchestrated two trades that brought in sharp shooter Ray Allen. Then Ainge’s biggest move of his career was next acquiring MVP and perennial all-star and star of the league Kevin Garnett setting up for an epic season and that is what the Celtics did.

Coming out of the gate with blazing force setting the league on fire with its new found Big 3 and leading the charge was the Captain Paul Pierce though notching his lowest ppg in his career Pierce offensively carried the Celtics with his aggressive scoring and willingness to sacrifice everything for the Celtics like he has his entire career inevitable leading the Celtics to the NBA finals after recording the best single season turnaround in NBA history going from a wretched 24-58 and doing the unthinkable and bouncing back to a 66-16 record and punching a ticket to the NBA finals where again Pierce showed his worth scoring at will in an NBA finals for the ages where the Celtics dominated Franchise rival the Los Angeles Lakers.

In a 6 game trumping  of the Lakers the Celtics rose victorious and with the Boston faithful and Captain Paul Pierce rising to the occasion and doing what he has done his whole career and exemplifying what it means to be a Celtic stood upon the podium after the game 6 win in which he averaged 21.8 PTS 6.3 AST and 4.5 REBS and in his home arena in front of the fans that backed him and honored his loyalty through the good and the bad watched their champion the heart and soul of the Celtics for the previous 10 years reach his ultimate goal of becoming an NBA champion and earning the NBA Finals MVP for those finals dominating from start to finish Pierce officially became what we all knew he was a Champion. With Pierce reaching this level now becoming a true champion he now was with the Celtics legends and cemented himself as a Hall of Famer and one of the true greats of the game.

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When we look back on the career of Paul Pierce as a Celtic one thing we will always remember is his loyalty with numerous times where he could have walked away to greener pastures he stuck it out and was the consummate professional and from the 1998 draft to that final buzzer this summer in the Celtics playoff exit Pierce showed his true colors as a player and as a human being. Coming full circle in his career from the skinny kid on draft night to the Celtic legend hoisting a championship trophy above his head we all will look back someday at his jersey in the rafters among the greats and remember what Paul Pierce really was about and that’s  being   A CELTIC FOR LIFE!

 

Adam Rioux – Celtics Insider  –  TitleTown Sports

Host of “The Jungle” at TitleTown Sports Radio Network

5 Questions.

What will Danny do next?

What will Danny do next?

Besides Dwight Howard, the Boston Celtics have probably been the biggest story-line this offseason.  They traded away Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Jason Terry and Doc Rivers.  They made a big splash and hired Brad Stevens to be their head coach.  Will they trade Rondo? Will they hold onto Rondo? In this article I answer some of the questions I received on Twitter and try to answer some of the more pressing questions surrounding the Celtics.

Should the Celtics trade Rajon Rondo?  Danny Ainge has said that he isn’t looking to trade Rondo. That doesn’t mean he isn’t listening to offers.  Brad Stevens in his introductory press conference did nothing but praise Rondo.  I doubt a move happens, but, remember this is Danny Ainge we’re talking about.  Ainge is about as predictable as a teenager going through puberty.  What if the Pistons come calling and are offering Brandon Knight, Greg Monroe or Andre Drummond and picks. Who says no? I’d hate to see Rondo go, but, he is coming off a major knee injury.  I think Rondo will be wearing Celtics green when the season starts and I believe he can lead this team to the playoffs.

What’s the biggest need for next season that hasn’t been approached yet? A big body or backup point guard.  Who will play center for this team the way it’s currently put together? Sorry Fab Melo, but, I don’t think you’re the answer.  Who will back up Rondo? Right now I think the backup point guard position is the biggest need. Rondo is coming off a major knee injury and we need to have a serviceable backup for him.  As for the center position the Celtics can always slide Olynyk down to the five spot and play him there.  If all else fails I heard Dino Radja is looking to make a comeback.

How does Kelly Olynyk fit with the current Celtics roster? Right now he has to be the starting center.  He could be a very nice big man coming off the bench.  He has a good offensive game, but, he needs to get stronger.  Will he ever be an all-star? I seriously doubt it, but, if he starts I could see him putting up 15-16 points a game.  He looked good in the first summer league game, but, lets remember it’s summer league.  It will be interesting to see how he fairs against Andre Drummond in today’s game against the Pistons.

Should the Celtics try and sign Greg Oden? Yes. As I stated earlier, the Celtics need a big body. Greg Oden is that big body.  Yes he is injury prone, but, he’d be cheap. I’d rather see Greg Oden sign with the Celtics than sign with the Miami Heat.  His career averages are 9 points a game along with 7 rebounds.  What IF (big if) he stays healthy? If I’m Ainge I’m willing to take a risk on him.  He’d be cheap and the benefits outweigh the negatives by a ton.  This past season they missed out on signing Kenyon Martin and Chris “Birdman” Anderson.  I’d hate to see the Celtics miss out on Oden.

Is Danny Ainge done dealing? I don’t think Danny Ainge even knows the answer to this question.  I’m sure he is listening to all the offers he receives.  I’m sure he is trying to unload Courtney Lee, Brandon Bass, Kris Humprhies and Gerald Wallace and his bloated contract.  If he can’t unload these players, I’m sure he’d be fine with that.  All four of  these players are nice bench players.  Courtney Lee struggled on the offense, but, was a fine defender. Brandon Bass had a good playoff series against the Knicks. Kris Humprhies, well nobody likes him, but, I think he could be fine bench player for the Celtics.  As for Gerald Wallace, well can things get any worse? He had a terrible season last year, hopefully a change of scenery is beneficial for him.

Thanks for reading, follow me on Twitter @Agent_rupp

Brennen Rupp- NBA Contributor- TitleTown Sports

Boston Celtics: Summer League Preview.

After watching the Boston Celtics organization introduce Brad Stevens I can tell you that I wish the regular season started on Sunday.  I’m sure I’m not the only one that is very excited for the new Era of the Boston Celtics to begin.  For those that need their Celtics fix, no worries, the NBA Summer League kicks off this Sunday against the Orlando Magic.  The next chapter of the Boston Celtics starts this Sunday and here are some things that I’ll be keeping my eye on this upcoming week:

Kelly Olynyk: The Celtics traded up to draft Olynyk.  A lot of the “experts” are calling it a bad move.  I like Olynyk’s game, not sure how it will transition to the NBA game though. I like his offensive game, but,  his defensive game, well, as Charles Barkley would say “turrible”.

The point guards: The Celtics have two point guards on their summer league roster you’ve probably heard of and one that you’ve probably never heard of.  The known: Phil Pressey from Missouri and Nolan Smith from Duke.  Pressey left school early, a decision he is probably regretting and Nolan Smith was part of the 2010 National Championship team.  The Unknown: Jayson Granger out of Uruguay. I know nothing about Granger, but, after reading his draft profile  and watching a short video clip, I’m excited to watch him play.  The Celtics are in need of a backup point guard and it very well could be one of these three guys who end up getting the gig.

Fab Melo: It’s no secret that Fab Melo is a project.  The question is: How much has he progressed? If Fab Melo can avoid those darn doors he may be a vital asset for the Celtics as a bench player.  He’ll more then likely never be an offensive force,but, if he can come off the bench and play some solid defense and grab some rebounds the Boston Celtics should be happy.  I’m just not holding my breath for any of those things to happen.  Have you ever just looked at a player and asked yourself: “How in the world is he in the NBA?” Yeah that’s what I get when I look at Fab Melo. Here’s to hoping that I’m wrong and Fab Melo pans out!

If you want to check out the rest of the summer league roster just click here!

Thanks for reading! Stay Strong Boston. Follow me on twitter @agent_rupp

Brennen Rupp – Boston Celtics Contributor – TitleTown Sports

Celtics Hire Brad Stevens as New Head Coach

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The Boston Celtics and Brad Stevens have come to an agreement for him to become the 17th head coach of the team. He will be leading the charge as the Celtics embark on their current rebuilding phase.

Stevens is 36 years old, and has served for the past six years as the head coach of Butler University. Along the way he lead the Bulldogs to two national championship games against Connecticut and Duke. He was the youngest coach to reach the Final Four since Bob Knight in 1973.

GM Danny Ainge has released a statement on the hiring of their new head coach.

“Brad and I share a lot of the same values,” said Ainge. “Though he is young, I see Brad as a great leader who leads with impeccable character and a strong work ethic. His teams always play hard and execute on both ends of the court. Brad is a coach who has already enjoyed lots of success, and I look forward to working with him towards Banner 18.”

Not a huge surprise that the Celtics went with a coach like Stevens, but someone with an impressive resume at his age is a huge pick up, and it is all apart of the Celtics rebuilding the team.

Stevens will be introduced to the media at 11 a.m. on Friday.

 

Mike Molyneaux – Multi Sport Contributor  – TitleTown Sports

Host of “The Jungle” at TitleTown Sports Radio Network

Follow Me @Mr_MikeNice

In Ainge we Trust: Free Agency is Among us

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With free agency and the trade rumors flying everywhere the Celtics have been a team that has attracted some attention since they agreed in principle to trade away its two veteran leaders to the Brooklyn Nets for a package of players with expiring contracts and 3 first round draft picks you’d think after this there wouldn’t be much to talk about. Think again Boston has been linked to such names as Josh Smith, Monta Ellis and even for a few seconds Dwight Howard making you think maybe Danny Ainge isn’t thinking rebuild and maybe thinking retool?

After reports surfaced that the Celtics had reached out to the Dwight Howard camp to ask if he had any interest in coming to Boston his response  “no” so the Dwight Howard to the celtics saga lasted a whole 21 hrs. As for Ellis his emergence to Boston is very unlikely to happen with a lot of other teams frankly can financially offer him more and be in contention and not in the middle of a rebuild. That leave good old Josh Smith the high octane power forward who in his time has been considered an elite all star caliber player , sound familiar? But smith has been under the scope with his attitude and leadership skills coming into question am I sounding more familiar to you yet?

Sounds like a familiar borderline perennial all star with a high celling who has been questioned about his ability of leading a team. Fact of the matter is Josh Smith and our own Rajon Rondo are two of if not the exact similar players in the fact of they both have been questioned about their leadership skills and willingness to be the go to guy for their respective teams.

If there is anything id like the Celtics to do this summer is find a way to get Smith here pairing the two high caliber players together would be just what Boston needs to get back on the right track to being a top tier team in the league. Most do not know that Smith and Rondo played together in high school and have had a close relationship since both of their entrances into the league. That same duo could translate into something real serious along with Green Bradley and a mixture of youth and core veterans Boston could be poised for a comeback to the top of the Eastern Conference.

With a new era upon us in the City of Champions and the most storied franchise in NBA history heading into a future that is unknown as a fan id feel more content to have a core of Rondo Smith Green and Bradley rather than tanking this whole season and acquiring nothing but rental players and hoping that you can get a #1 overall pick or at least a top 5 pick. The Celtics either way have an interesting few months ahead of them here with what they will do with everything they receive from the Nets trade and what they will do with their current roster as is it’s shaping up to be a summer for the ages, or a summer that feels like ages.

 

Adam Rioux – Celtics Insider  –  TitleTown Sports

Host of “The Jungle” at TitleTown Sports Radio Network

Celtics and Nets Agree in principle to Block Buster Trade

 

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Within minutes of the second round of the Nba Draft getting under way ESPN’S Chris Broussard has confirmed from multiple sources that the trade we have heard all day between the Boston Celtics and the Brooklyn Nets has been agreed to in principle on both sides and will be able to be finalized on July 10th when the free agency period begins. With the last trade coming down to the same stages as this it leaves you to wonder the seriousness of it this time? If so this will mark the absolute end of the big three era in Boston with not one remaining member of the big 3 no longer on the Celtics and marking the end of the era that catapulted the Celtics back to an elite team in the League with this trade it is all in for a rebuild and Danny Ainge has made it no secret that he will not do what Red Auerbach did and hold onto his aging stars too long and cripple the franchise for years to come.

Now we are left with the supposedly agreed on trade here which will send The current version of the deal will send Celtics veterans Pierce, Garnett and Jason Terry to Brooklyn in exchange for three future first round picks, Gerald WallaceKris Humphries‘ expiring contract, Reggie Evans, Kris Joseph and do a sign-and-trade with Keith Bogans to finalize the financials of the package. The two teams will also have the option to swap picks in the 2017 NBA Draft. Essentially sending Pierce and Garnett on their way out of Boston and onto a Nets team that will be much improved leaving the celtics ready to get down to a rebuild with the faces of their Franchise chase a championship.

With this deal Danny Ainge again takes a gamble and from the looks of the deal is not clearing any cap space and taking on useless players ,yes we are not looking to pick up guys to compete “now” I know this but to go out and get assets you need worthy pieces to attain them and what Ainge is getting in this trade is nothing of the sorts the Celtics will have one expiring contract of Humphries that’s not really that much and Gerald Wallace is owed $30 million over three years along with Jeff Green, Brandon Bass, and Rajon Rondo is putting you financially right back where the Celtics were yesterday the only enticing offer here is the three first round draft picks and that has some faults to it as well when the Nets acquire Pierce,Garnett and Terry they will automatically bring the Nets to being a contender in the East essentially setting those picks to be hig in the draft order essentially setting you up to draft crappy players.

At the end of the day we knew this day would come and all Celtics fans can say is that it was a fun ride and we got to watch three of the best players in the past 10 years and one of the better coaches as well lead the most storied franchise in the NBA to a title two finals appearances , being in contention every year as a Celtic fan I am blessed and as a writer all I have to say is it’s time, it’s just time to move on.

 

Adam Rioux – Celtics Insider  – TitleTown Sports

Host of “The Jungle” at TitleTown Sports Radio Network

Celtics Move Up and Draft Kelly Olynyk At #13

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Leading into tonight’s NBA draft again the only thing talked about in Boston was yet another “block buster “   trade with the Nets. The Celtics had the 16th pick in the first round of the 2013 draft heading into the 13th pick we were informed that the Celtics had moved up from 16th to 13th and informed Dallas who they wanted them to pick for them and the Celtics then selected Canadian and former Gonzaga big man Kelly Olynyk the 6’10 center.

Aside from his time at Gonzaga Kelly was a key player on the Canadian national team that placed 6th in the FIBA world championships the last go about.  For starters Kelly will not impress anyone with his Defense it is mediocre at best his foot work is above average and is an excellent back to the basket player and can score with a great touch around the basket  and an average rebounder. All those things aside good or bad i will give the Celtics a B- for this pick.

I think Olynyk can be a solid player on the offensive end but could turn into a liability on defense if not coached properly. The Celtics were in desperate need of a big rim protecting big man who could control the paint they did not come out with that I am not ready to say this Draft was not a success but Olynyk is a borderline shot in the dark here for a team looking to attain productive assets.

With all the turmoil surrounding the Celtics and their future and the recent departure of its head coach and the uncertainty of its two leaders Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett the draft was the last thing on some fans minds today but indeed was a very important step in the inevitable rebuilding process

 

Adam Rioux – Celtics Insider  – TitleTown Sports

Host of “The Jungle” at TitleTown Sports Radio Network

 

Exit Wound: Doc Rivers’ Bitter Departure

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After nine years of what may have sometimes seemed like a roller coaster ride, Doc Rivers has left the Boston Celtics to become the new head coach of the Los Angeles Clippers. Some may say, good riddance he wasn’t that great anyway. Others may say, it was time for a change since the Celtics are upon another rebuilding phase. Whatever the case may be for Rivers no longer being with the Celtics organization, something rubs me the wrong way about how this all went down, from the day the Celtics playoff run ended, till this very point in time.

When the Celtics obtained Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen in the summer of 2007, everyone in the Celtics organization was well aware of what they were getting into. Garnett, Allen, and Celtics captain Paul Pierce were all over 30 years old (which in basketball years means you’re getting old) so they knew if they wanted to accomplish the ultimate goal of an NBA championship, the sooner the better. Being able to win the championship in their first year together was an amazing feat, and the chances of having the same amount of success the next season seemed like a real possibility, but everyone knew in the long run “The Big Three” wasn’t getting any younger.

The 2008-09 Celtics had another good regular season, but the lost of Kevin Garnett to injury during the season ended their chances of another title-run. In the 2009-10 season, the Celtics were off to another hot start but Doc ultimately decided to cut-down his aging stars’ minutes to keep them fresh for the playoffs. As a result the Celtics fell to an even 27–27 record the rest of the way and finished the 2009–10 regular season with a 50–32 record. Despite a rough ending to the season, the Celtics made it to the NBA Finals where the lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in seven games. The following season, the same “Big Three Era” Celtics, along with some new acquisitions, made it all the way to the second round of the playoffs where they lost to the Miami Heat. A series in which may people felt the Celtics were “too old” to keep up with the Heat. Everything following that series loss is the reason why today I am still irked by Doc’s decision to leave.

On May 13, 2011, after months of rumors that he would retire, the Celtics and Rivers agreed upon a 5-year contract extension worth $35 million. In the 2011-2012 season, the Celtics had another roller coaster type of year, but somehow made it to game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals where they fell to Heat again. This time around, the Celtics didn’t seem to look “too old”, but rather they didn’t have the right role players to push them over the hump because the likes of Marquis Daniels, Keyon Dooling, and Mickael Pietrus were not getting the job done.

The summer of 2012 brought the Celtics to a crossroads. While the team just came within one game of reaching the NBA Finals, it was still obvious that father time was steadily starting to catch up with the “Big Three”. The Celtics ultimately decided they wanted to give it another go with their core guys and wanted to bring everyone back. Everyone that is, except for Ray Allen who decided to take his talents to South Beach. Still, the summer of 2012 seemed to be a very good off-season for the Celtics with the pieces they had, and brought in.

After their worst season since the season prior to Garnett’s arrival and key losses to players during the campaign, the Celtic’s stumbled into the playoff where they were eliminated by the New York Knicks in the first round.

The post-game press conference after their game 6 loss to the Knicks saw Doc Rivers give his usual end of the season comments on how he doesn’t know if he’s coming back, he needs some time to detox. Now, I can’t blame a coach for saying they need some time off to think after a long season, but its been the same routine we had become accustomed to with Doc. Even after the fact that the off-season prior, he signed a 5-year contract extension.

According to Danny Ainge, he and Doc both knew and discussed around the time of Doc signing the contract that the core players won’t be around forever and a rebuilding phase would come. At the time, it didn’t seem like a problem for Doc and a lot of talk of “Celtics coach for life” was being tossed around because it seemed like he was in it for the long-run.

When rumors started circulating, before even the name Clippers was brought up, that Doc was hesitant to return to the Celtics because of a possible rebuilding phase, I was very confused. Sure the team just had a rough ending to the season, but Doc was still under a contract which he agreed upon. Then the Clippers came into the picture, and after weeks of back and forth between the two teams a deal was stuck and Doc was let out of is contract with the Celtics.

That fact that he kept the Celtics in limbo for so long about his future plans was very troubling, but knowing he had three years left on his contract and still wanted to leave is what bothers me the most. He had to have known a day would come where KG, Pierce, and Ray would not longer be around. Why sign a 5-year contract extension? In a recent press conference, Danny Ainge stated he had no animosity towards Doc’s decision, but I know there are people and definitely fans who think it looks bad.

Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck stated in an interview, “We were planning for the long-term with Doc because we think he’s one of those foundational guys.”

A lot of fans hate Ray Allen now, but most of that hatred comes from the fact that he went to the Miami Heat. At the end of the day, Ray was a free agent and was able to choose where he wanted to play. Doc still owed three more years to the Celtics, but instead of sticking with the team that easily could have fired him, especially during the 2006-2007 season, he left to go coach a team that at the moment might have a brighter future than the Celtics.

The Celtics were already slowly moving into a rebuilding phase. Doc Rivers departure definitely sped up the process. While Danny Ainge has remained confident that the organization will take all the proper steps to rebuild the team into championship contenders, the coach who has been with Ainge through all the ups and downs over the last nine season, has decided to check out early.

Mike Molyneaux – Multi Sport Contributor  – TitleTown Sports

Host of “The Jungle” at TitleTown Sports Radio Network

Follow Me @Mr_MikeNice