Celtics put six guys (including Kedrick Brown) in double figures, Pierce scores 25, Walker is a rebound and two assists shy of a triple-double, Celtics only turn the ball over 8 times…and get waxed. Six losses in a row. Peter May says the team is in a “certifiable, embarrassing, and worrisome slump”. Steve Bulpett has Paul Pierce reaching for a positive as the Celtics guard says that maybe a little adversity will be good for the team. Carolyn Thornton has the story of the game for the Projo, and Christopher Price reports for the Metro. Andy Nesbitt has more on Pierce and Walker, who stuck around to face the music and talk about what the team needs. Mark Murphy looks at Antoine Walker, once again the target of boos at the Fleet. As for Pierce, Lenny Megliola points out that he’s likely hurting as well, but the focus of his article is that the Celtics were disgraced last night. Murphy also talks war with a few Celtics, find out how they stay informed, and chats with Grant Long about his uncle who went to Vietnam, lost an arm, and received the Purple Heart. Price also looks at the remaining schedule. Into the notebooks…Thornton’s notebook says Pierce’s back is still hurting him. May’s notebook says something will happen on the Union front with Vin Baker in the next few days. In Bulpett’s notebook, Pierce thinks the team will be ready for the playoffs.
With just a few days to go to opening day, there’s still time to stir the pot and strike fear into the hearts of Red Sox fans. While Jeff Horrigan and Nick Cafardo play up the doomsday countdown scenario regarding Pedro, I prefer to go with Sean McAdam’s version, which is more positive, and hints that perhaps the Sox and Pedro might be close to getting something done. (Hint – If you don’t want to get irritated, skip the first two, and go directly to McAdam.) Even Dan Shaughnessy avoids going the doomsday rout, instead praising Pedro for his maturity. Maybe Dan really has turned a new leaf… One question from his column though, he says:
let me go on record yet again and predict an Opening Day no-hitter from Pedro Monday in St. Petersburg, Fla.
I like that. Much better than a prediction that he blows his shoulder out opening day. I haven’t kept close tabs on Dan’s appearances lately, where else did he “go on the record” and say this? A Barnicle show? The NESN Globe SportsPlus program? I’m not being cynical, I want to know where else Shaughnessy is spreading his message of cheer and goodwill. Speaking of the SportsPlus program, Gordon Edes gives us some snippets from his one-on-one interview with Sox GM Theo Epstein which will air tonight. Tony Massarotti also weighs in on the Pedro issue, urging everyone to relax. David Heuschkel looks at the Sox pitching staff taking shape, with the release of Frank Castillo yeserday. He looks at the remaining candidates and their chances at sticking. It would appear that Steve Woodard might have the best shot. An intriguing guy is Hector Almonte. Of course, 96 MPH fastballs are always intriguing and nice to have in your bullpen. Sean McAdam has more on the release of Castillo. Kevin Gray makes his first trip to spring training this year, and finds amusement in Manny, and less amused by Casey Fossum. If you’re signed up for the Herald’s columnists, you can read Steve Buckley and get Nomar’s thoughts on his pal Lou leaving town. Cafardo and Horrigan continue to be joined at the hip, as their notebooks are as similar as their articles today. Cafardo’s notebook is about Castillo’s release and Nomar is happy for Lou. Horrigan’s notebook is about Castillo, Lou and Nomar taking a shot to the head yesterday. McAdam’s notebook looks at Pedro’s performance yesterday.
Stephen Harris looks at the Bruins facing a big test tonight if they want to be considered legit. Frank Dell’Apa also notes that the Bruins will clinch a playoff spot with a win tonight. Harris’ notebook looks at Joe Thornton trying to win the scoring title.
Michael Felger reports on the Patriots getting a restructured deal done with Tom Brady to free up some space (2.1 Million) to sign their upcoming draft picks. He assesses their progress this offseason and notes that they have all their starters under contract. That includes offense, defense and special teams. And they’re under the cap by a couple million at the least. Not bad, I’d say. Ron Borges reports on the decision not to change to overtime rules, and gives Belichick praise for his proposal for solving the OT problem…simply move the kickoff spot up five yards and make the team that gets the ball first work a little harder. At the end, the article quotes the Herald as it’s source for learning about the Tom Brady contract restructure. I found that slightly curious. Mark Farinella has a look at the beginning of the offseason program, and thoughts on the Pats moving their training camp to Foxboro. Picking up my Sports Illustrated, the Scorecard by Peter King was interesting. It’s about the changes Bill Parcells is making in Dallas. I liked this bit:
Parcells's coaches -- he has five holdovers from Dave Campo's staff -- don't even chafe when he tells them that past disciples, such as defensive guru Bill Belichick, did things better. "He talks about Belichick all the time," says defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer. "You think that doesn't motivate me?"
Hector Longo compares Carmelo Anthony to Antoine Walker, gives the Patriots a “D” for their offseason moves to date, and urges fans to enjoy Nomar while you got him. Luke Meredith says goodbye to Lou and has mostly baseball related thoughts in the Unsilent Majority.