These games are just painful to watch. This isn’t meant to sound like Bill Simmons, I’m serious, but why is it that the team you root for seems to play better during the stretches you’re not watching it? Last night when the Celtics went down by 16, I went into the kitchen and loaded the dishwasher. Just couldn’t watch for awhile, although my mind was still on the game while in the kitchen. Finally, when I come back to the game, the Celtics have cut the lead to two. NJ hasn’t scored a point something like five plus minutes into the fourth quarter. As soon as I start watching, the Nets start scoring and pull away. This just seems to happen all the time. I know it just isn’t me that does that, either. Anyway…could help be on the way for the Celtics? Jackie MacMullan and Steve Bulpett report that the Celtic owners have made an offer to Danny Ainge to come in and run the basketball operations. Couple things on that…did they even attempt to contact Bird? If not, why not? The MacMullan article mentions that they’ve talked to Kevin McHale and Dave Cowens, but that Ainge was their first choice. No mention of Bird. Second, it was interesting last night on the TNT broadcast that Ainge was actually asked what he would do to change the team if he was running the club. He laughed, really made no attempt to answer seriously, and just said he would get Jason Kidd and Kobe Bryant. According to MacMullan these discussions have gone on more than once, I wonder if Ainge’s broadcast partners were aware that he was in talks with the Celtics, and that prompted the question. I try not to pay too close attention to the TNT broadcasts anyway, because they just seem to be one giant Jason Kidd love-in, which sickens me.

As for the game…Steve Bulpett and Shira Springer report on the loss, which puts the Celtics in a 0-2 hole. Once again the Nets made a run at the end of the first half, like they did Monday night and did in last year’s playoffs to take a halftime lead. Carolyn Thornton and Jerry Trecker round out the game coverage. Once again, Paul Pierce was brilliant, recording a triple-double. Mark Murphy and Mark Blaudschun look at Pierce’s performances, and note that he could use some help. Walker haters unite…the Big O’s binky, (and mine too, if the truth be told) is just having an awful series. Peter May says his performance is just killing the Celtics. Dan Ventura writes that Walker wouldn’t fit in with the Red Sox, because he can put the blame on himself when he isn’t playing well. Lenny Megliola looks at Walker facing the music. Yesterday, Rob Bradford offered a somewhat different look at Walker, looking at the positives, while noting what the perception of Walker is in other press boxes:

"He's the stupidest player in the league," blurted out one New York scribe in the press room. The same writer went on to try and link Walker's typical post-game cool down session (head down, ice bags on knees, shoulders slumped) with the co-captain's perceived end-of-the-world attitude.

The printed press here lately has been pretty good to Antoine, probably because as noted in those articles, he’s always there to talk to them and face the music, unlike some other stars in town. Radio, TV and talk show callers are harsher on Antoine. Lately, the Eagle-Tribune has decided it needs to be more outrageous to compete with the larger papers. We had Hector Longo’s ridiculous article a few weeks, there have been some other eyebrow raisers here and there, and then there is Michael Muldoon’s piece on Walker from yesterday. Sarcastic, biting, it’s a clear Dan Shaughnessy-wannabe article. Byron Scott continues to take shots at the city of Boston. Peter May records Scott’s diatribe on the fans of Boston being abusive and that the city is still a tough place for African-Americans. Mark Murphy looks at Scott’s comments and gets Celtic opinions on how some of them have been treated as African-Americans in Boston. Jackie MacMullan notes that this Celtics team is one that is not going to just roll over and quit. Elliot Denman looks at the Nets holding serve on their homecourt. Ron Borges looks at the nastiness of the series for MSNBC. Michael Gee’s pay column looks at how the measuring sticks that the Celtics usually use, like 45% shooting or 20 assists, and how they’ve reached these plateaus and are still losing. Springer’s notebook looks at Kidd dealing with the media after the game, Bulpett’s notebook looks at JR Bremer getting named to the All Rookie second team. Thornton gets mentioned in those Bulpett notes, and in her own notebook, she also leads with Bremer.

Sox made another 5 run comeback yesterday, and this time were able to hold the lead. Bob Hohler looks at a couple of underachievers (so far, anyway) in Damon and Giambi leading the Sox to victory. Jeff Horrigan looks at daddy Giambi coming to get both his boys out of trouble the last few days. Sean McAdam writes that these Sox are proving that no lead is safe…in either direction. David Heuschkel focuses on Johnny Damon as the star of the game. George Kimball has a short pay column on Bill Mueller making a big contribution to the Sox so far. Sean McAdam looks at the Sox adding Bruce Chen to the bullpen mix. The notebooks mostly focus on Chen as well, Hohler’s notebook looks at the pickup, Horrigan’s notebook mentions Chen’s “boundless potential”, but has an NL scout pretty down on him. Heuschkel rounds out the trinity of Chen notebooks. In McAdam’s notebook, he looks at Damon being treated as a pariah in KC.

The Bob Ryan saga continues on. Elisabeth J. Beardsley, under the headline, “Romney takes rips at Ryan” reports on the Governor’s comments on the situation. Not exactly “rips” as the headline would lead you to believe. Bill Griffith weighs in on the situation, noting the reaction on WEEI and elsewhere, and saying that the Globe has always been worried about it’s reporters being on the airwaves, talking off the cuff, but being promoted as “Globe writers”.

Nick Cafardo has a short bit on the Patriots signing a rookie safety out of Williams College.

Mark Blaudschun looks at the confusing situation of what is going to happen with the Big East and ACC conferences.

Luke Meredith, in his Unsilent Majority column, weighs in on Walpole Wally, the UMass mess and has some harsh words for NH losing the Old Man. Jim Donaldson rails about Channel 12 in Providence cutting out on CSI: Miami early because:

Seems that Monday night's installment of CSI: Miami dealt with the investigation of a deadly fire in a nightclub set off -- intentionally, in this case -- by pyrotechnics.

He wonders is the station would also cut out early on Red Sox games when the bullpen comes in because it would be uncomfortable to viewers.