So it’s back to the games tonight, after a night off for all three local teams yesterday.
The Celtics look to take control of their series with game five tonight at the Garden. Frank Dell’Apa notes that the key to the game four win was not the last second shot by Big Baby, but rather the defensive effort that got them into position to win the game in the first place. Mark Murphy has Kendrick Perkins dealing with the pain in his shoulder and playing through it. Robert Lee has Big Baby growing into a man in game three. Bill Doyle has the Celtics following Baby’s lead and sticking their chins out for game five.
Marc J. Spears has Ray Allen still struggling with his shooting touch. Steve Bulpett reminds us again that the playoff fate of the Celtics rests in the hands of Rajon Rondo. Jim Fenton has the Celtics finding ways to survive. Taking a page from football coverage, Ron Borges says that now we’ll see how the Magic play with a bloodied lip. Jeff Howe has a look at the friendship of Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis.
It’s another do-or-die night for the Bruins. Fluto Shinzawa has the Bruins reacting to the news that Carolina’s Scott Walker will not be suspended for tonight’s game. Gerry Callahan cranks out a decent column about how the Bruins will need to hand out their own punishment to Walker and the ‘Canes tonight.
Steve Conroy has more on the non-suspension for Walker. Bud Barth has the Bruins still waiting for word on the status of Aaron Ward, who took the sucker-punch from Walker. Conroy adds that the Bruins will need a strong game from Zdeno Chara tonight as well.
Nancy Marrapese-Burrell says that the Hurricanes are used to being in this situation and have stepped up before. Stephen Harris outlines five keys for the Bruins to complete the comeback. Michael Felger has a few things we didn’t know about the Bruins and Hurricanes.
Michael Silverman looks at how Jason Bay has made the Red Sox forget all about Manny Ramirez. Bill Burt has Clay Buchholz ready and waiting for his shot with the big club. Mike Fine notes that the Red Sox have the best record in the majors since their 2-6 start to the season. Joe McDonald says that there has been a lot of pain this season for the Red Sox, but a lot of gain as well.
Adam Kilgore looks at how the stolen base figures in the American League have jumped through the roof in the last few years. Dan Lamothe wonders if Brad Penny could be trade bait. Dom Amore says that there are some major differences between the Red Sox and Yankees right now.
Kirk Minihane looks at the winners and losers from the Manny Ramirez suspension. I think he forgot a few:
Winners: Idiot talk show hosts and irrelevant columnists.
Losers: Listeners and readers of the above.
Alex Speier has Dan Duquette responding to the allegations made by Lou Merloni.
Stan Grossfeld has a feature on the physical therapy of the catcher who was hit by a bat-wielding Jose Offerman in 2007.
Karen Guregian has Matthew Slater eying the kick return opening vacated by Ellis Hobbs. Slater also offers some thoughts on rookie Patrick Chung. We also have a mini-roundup of Patriots news on Patriots Daily.