The Celtics won two games in a row for the first time since mid-December, but it sure wasn’t easy for the green, who saw a 23 point lead vanish against the New York Knicks before Gerald Green and Al Jefferson saved them with some huge shots in the fourth quarter to give the Celtics a 102-94 win at the Garden.

Shira Springer says that the Celtics back from the brink last night, unwilling to give up, even after losing their lead. Mark Murphy has the Celtics getting mad – at themselves – after giving up the lead. Scott Souza says that the Celtics showed a bit of toughness last night in coming out with this win.

After going scoreless in his homecoming in Houston, Gerald Green bounced back with 21 points last night, including some huge play in the fourth quarter. Steve Bulpett looks at the second year swingman’s ability to bounce back after a tough night on Monday. Souza has Paul Pierce relating his favorite high school memory. Mike Fine is reassessing his position on the job being done by Danny Ainge and Doc Rivers, and it’s not for the better. Ron Chimelis says the shine is off the parquet floor these days.

Tim Weisberg has a good look at the tribute to DJ at the Garden last night. Bulpett also has KC Jones, Robert Parish and M.L. Carr paying tribute to their fallen teammate at halftime.

As expected, there were plenty of media types who would not usually be at the Garden in attendance last night because of the controversy around remarks made by Cedric Maxwell during Monday’s game. Desmond Connor says that kidding or not, Maxwell stepped over the line and went where you just don’t go these days. Margery Eagan also weighs in, saying that just because most of us won’t say what Maxwell said, we still might think it. Bill Doyle has more on the remarks and apology from Maxwell.

Springer’s notebook has Wally Szczerbiak getting set to undergo season ending ankle surgery. Murphy’s notebook has more on the procedure schedule for Szczerbiak, which will give the forward “a new ankle.”

Red Sox

The Grapefruit League season began last night as the Red Sox took on (who else) the Minnesota Twins at City of Palms Park. Curt Schilling was the first to take the mound for the Red Sox, and by all accounts looked pretty good doing it. The game with the Twins ended in a 10 inning tie.

Steve Buckley says Schilling may not look good, but he looked good last night. While still getting his shots in, Dan Shaughnessy admits that “Schilling was the strike machine Sox fans have come to love” in his outing last night. Sean McAdam says that the Red Sox will be faced with the issue of Schilling’s contract every time he takes the mound this season. Jeff Goldberg has Schilling coming out of his outing last night wishing he could’ve pitched a little more. Jon Couture has Schilling getting off to a good start in his spring debut.

Jackie MacMullan has Jonathan Papelbon (aka Starter Boy) OK with having to prove himself in his new role. Rob Bradford has the story of Manny’s unlikely friendship with an elderly couple. Manny has been generous and helpful to the couple since the late 1990’s. Buckley says that these Grapefruit League games are going to count this season, as there are so many questions surrounding this team. Jeff Horrigan has Red Sox teammates expressing mild skepticism over Manny’s claim that now he is happy in Boston and wants to play the rest of his career here. They know he’s just as likely to change his mind tomorrow. Maureen Mullen has Bronson Arroyo comfortable with Cincinnati. Joe Haggerty has Kevin Youkilis getting into the hot sauce business.

Shaughnessy’s notebook has Jon Lester set to make his spring debut in a B game on Monday. The Projo notebook has Brenden Donnelly seeming to take the early lead in the non-competition for the closer role. Horrigan’s notebook has Terry Francona planning on going into the season without a long relief man in his bullpen. Couture’s notebook has Jacoby Ellsbury showing a glimmer of his considerable talent last night.


Mike Reiss has a look at whether the Patriots plan on being players in the free agent market which starts tomorrow. John Tomase reports that the Patriots could grant Corey Dillon his release before midnight tonight. Albert Breer looks at two new names that will be on the market due to releases, Jamal Lewis and Brian Simmons and if they might be a fit for the Patriots.


Barbara Matson has the Bruins brining their new players into the fold at practice yesterday. Steve Conroy has Aaron Ward happy to be reunited with Dave Lewis. Mike Loftus says that Peter Chiarelli had the right idea in trying to upgrade his defense. Conroy’s notebook has Patrice Bergeron missing his pal Brad Boyes.


Mark Blaudschun has a look at first year coach Billy Coen making strides with his basketball team at Northeastern. Anthony Dicomo has Tyrelle Blair making a big impact in the middle for Boston College.

Garry Brown hits to all fields, Buddy Thomas answers burning questions.