CSNNE’s “THE ‘86 CELTICS” Debuts Wednesday

Their release:

CSN NEW ENGLAND PRESENTS:

“THE ‘86 CELTICS”

A 2-HOUR SPECIAL DEBUTING JUNE 15TH AT 8PM 

In-Depth Interviews with Celtics All-Time Greats Larry Bird, Robert Parish, Kevin McHale, Bill Walton, Danny Ainge & More in this Exclusive CSN-Produced 2-Hour Documentary on the Exceptional 1985-86 Celtics Team…30 Years Later 

BURLINGTON, MA, June 9, 2016 — The 1985-86 Boston Celtics team has long been considered one of the greatest teams in NBA history, fielding one of the strongest and deepest talent pools and bringing the storied franchise to its 16th NBA Championship.  Featuring NBA legends like Robert Parish, Kevin McHale, and Larry Bird  (who once again confirmed his MVP status that season), the 1985-86 Celtics team is still revered and celebrated, even 30 years later.

On Wednesday, June 15th at 8PM, CSN New England will debut a 2-hour documentary — “’The ’86 Celtics” — recounting this incredible season of NBA dominance with 67 wins, just one loss at home all season, and culminating with an NBA Championship. This CSN-produced original documentary, almost a year in the making, includes exclusive and insightful interviews with the team’s key constituents who are now spread across the country.

The documentary — narrated by Glenn Ordway who served as the Celticscolor commentator along side the legendary Johnny Most during the 1986 season — features exclusive interviews from every key member of the ‘86 Celtics team and others.  Interviews include the original “Big Three” Bird, McHale, and Parish as well as Bill Walton, Danny Ainge, Greg Kite, Jerry Sichting, Sam Vincent, and Rick Carlisle. In addition, the show includes interviews and guest appearances from several who battled against this formidable Celtics team, including Dominique Wilkins, Doc Rivers and James Worthy, as well as former Celtics great Cedric Maxwell.  The journalists who covered the team during this amazing journey to Banner 16 will also be featured with their perspective, including Bob Ryan, Jackie MacMullan, Dan Shaughnessy, Peter May and Mike Gorman.

Highlights from ”The ’86 Celtics” will include:

  • A summary of how Celtics legend Red Auerbach assembled one of the greatest teams in NBA history.
  • A look back from Bill Walton and Cedric Maxwell on how Auerbach made the trade with the Clippers to bring Walton to the Celtics.
  • Player interviews and insight on how their dynamic roster — which included five future Hall of Fame players –were able to mesh to become one of the most prolific teams in NBA history.
  • A plethora of Celtics nostalgia as the film takes viewers back inside the original BostonGarden to the glory days of the Bird era.
  • A retrospective on how the Celtics battled Michael Jordan in one of the greatest playoff games in NBA history.
  • A recount of the Celtics supremacy in the Playoffs over the Hawks and Bucks, culminating in a showdown with Rockets in the NBA Finals.

Leading up to the documentary debut, CSN has been running an “86 Days until the 86 Celtics Special” countdown initiative (#86Celtics) in an effort to get viewers and fans ready for this exclusive 2-hour show.  CSN will also begin running dedicated podcasts which will include additional exclusive content and interview material related to the ‘86 Celtics that can only be seen online.

This documentary, produced by the same network and production team that just won the New England Sports Emmy for Sports: One-Time Special for the “Tommy Heinsohn: An NBA Masterpiece” documentary, promises to provide CSN New England viewers with an exclusive and honest look back at the 1986 Boston Celtics franchise with unique viewpoints from the players and media who were part of that era and others that have been part of the franchise since. Anyone tuning in – whether it be on TV or online — can bask in the glory of the Celtics Championship title 30 years ago as this cherished team raised Banner 16 to the rafters.

“The ‘86 Celtics” is presented by SpeeDee Oil Change and Auto Service. After its original debut on Wednesday, June 15th, it will repeat throughout the month, only on CSN New England (check local listings for airtimes).

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The Blocklist – Thursday on BSMW

As most of my punditry (and posting) is being done via Twitter these days – look in the right hand sidebar for proof – I thought I’d put together a list of people who I have apparently angered so much that they felt the need to block me.

I only bring this up because, if you know me at all, or have followed me, you know a couple things. 1. I rarely, if ever make personal insults, and 2. I am never profane.

So why would these people block me?

the-blocklist

It’s an illustrious list, no?

Let’s break them down.

Ron Borges – I think the first thing Ron Borges did when he got a Twitter account was block me. Ron was always willing to spar via email, and never give an inch. On Twitter, where it is public and the whole world can see, he is less inclined.

Tony Massarotti – I definitely have given Massarotti a hard time about his moronic takes, his lapdog status and the fact that he sold his soul, betrayed everything he once stood for to make a few bucks more on 98.5 FM weekdays. He might be entitled to the block.

John TomaseWhy won’t you leave John alone? It’s been almost 10 years now. As long as people are claiming that the Patriots taped the Rams walkthough, and by extension that the Patriots “taped practices” Tomase should be reminded of it. He won’t be, by me, on Twitter anyway. Because I’m blocked.

Kevin Paul Dupont – Dupes is a fairly recent addition. It came after I responded to this Tweet:

My response was “You can’t fix stupid.” So, that might’ve crossed the line to personal, but still pretty mild in terms of internet insults. He retweeted, called me a Professional Whiner and blocked me.

Mikey Adams – I honestly don’t know too much about why I’m blocked here. Adams had an undercover account on the older BSMW Forums, and probably didn’t like how he was talked about there. He trolled me on Facebook once, and I blocked him there, so maybe this is retaliation.

Sun Chronicle Sports – Wow, blocked by an entire sports section of a newspaper! Actually this is the account of Mark Farinella, who has had a back and forth relationship with BSMW for many years now. I believe the block came during the time he was being extremely critical of the Krafts for having a backup power line to Gillette Stadium, meaning they had power and the rest of the town did not during a power outage.

Michael Silver – The only national media in the bunch, Silver blocked me during deflategate after I challenged some of his ridiculous posturing and questioned the NFL Network’s ability to report straight – especially after Judy Battista had reported the leak that Brady’s camp desperately wanted the transcript of his appeal to be sealed, when in fact it was the exact opposite. Another lifetime ago, I had interviewed Silver for PFW, and found him a quirky, interesting guy.

I’m sure I’m blocked by other people, but these were ones that I was aware of.

Do you see who isn’t on the list?

Dan Shaughnessy, for one, I don’t think he actually reads mentions on Twitter, but I have to grudgingly give him credit for not blocking people. Albert Breer is another who takes a lot of crap and doesn’t block people left and right. Gary Tanguay, John Dennis, Gerry Callahan are others I’d think might block me who haven’t.

I think Twitter blocks say something about character. Especially when they’re blocking someone who isn’t confrontational, isn’t profane at them, or personally insulting them and their family. So why the block? They can’t handle criticism. Can’t be told they’re wrong, and can’t be called out for their manufactured hot takes?

It’s interesting that the people on this list have no problems viciously and spitefully calling out the people they cover. But when the spotlight is turned to themselves, they do not like it.

The Streak Continues

No, not Jackie Bradley Jr, who unfortunately had his hitting streak snapped at 29 games last night.

I don’t really mean Xander Bogaerts, who increased his streak to 19 games last night.

Clay Buchholz’s streak of lousy performances however, is alive and well.

Also alive and well is the ability of sports radio hosts to make ridiculous statements which have no basis in reality or fact.

I present to you Tweedledum and Tweedledee:

FELGER: BLAME FARRELL FOR KILLING BRADLEY’S HITTING STREAK

 

Of course, last night was the SIXTH different spot Bradley had hit in the lineup during his streak.

Tim Britton:

In fact, to blame the end of Bradley’s 29-game hitting streak on misplaced managerial meddling or the interruption of well-worn, superstitious habits is to ignore both a series of facts and the gravity of the accomplishment in the first place. Bradley’s hits were not the result of his spot in the order, and his lack of them on Thursday wasn’t either.

Sean McAdam:

First of all, Thursday night marked the sixth (SIXTH!) different spot that Bradley has hit during the hitting streak. He had hit second, sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth. So the notion that any change was disruptive was absurd.

As for the notion that Bradley would treat his at-bats differently because he was leading off? Also wrong. Bradley’s major adjustment since spring training has been being aggressive early in the count. So, do you know how many pitches Bradley saw in four at-bats as the leadoff hitter? Eight.

Does that sound like someone who was being forced to be more patient for the night, or someone changing their approach by working the count more?

Common sense and facts though, aren’t going to sway the tidal wave of #hotsportztakes.


I’ll expose my ignorance here and say I had no idea who Jim Breuer was prior to this week.

The comedian made big news this week by revealing he had an encounter with John Jastremski of Deflategate fame down in Mexico.

There are enough holes in his story to make it dubious, and his appearance on Toucher and Rich yesterday – the day before his album was released today, make the whole thing just a bit too convenient for me.


The by-the-book Ravens were punished by the NFL yesterday for breaking offseason training rules.

The punishment was a fine and loss of a week of OTA activity. Some wondered why the punishment wasn’t more severe.

Yet, this was the second violation for the Ravens since 2010:

It was then explained that this was their first violation during THIS CBA period.

Huh. The Patriots are still being punished for things that happened in 2007, isn’t that before this CBA?


Media should pipe down about Matt Harvey’s silence – Chad Finn looks at the media outrage over the Mets pitcher choosing not to talk to them.

Chris Berman to leave longtime ESPN gigs at end of 2016 NFL season – The longtime ESPN broadcaster refutes reports that he is retiring, however.

My Question

So here’s my question:

If Roger Goodell is “really not focused” on the Tom Brady appeal and he “didn’t see the report” from Congress on the NFL interfering with the concussion study, what exactly has he been doing?

Furthermore, if he “didn’t see the report,” (he said it TWICE) how was he able to spend considerable time in his press conference yesterday disputing the allegations made in the report?

Then there is this:

A Congressman issued that report without even talking to any of our advisors. I don’t think that’s appropriate. I don’t think that’s the right way to do things.

So all Congressional reports should be cleared with the NFL before being released. Got it.

I’ve said this ad nauseum, but with very few exceptions here and there, the media does not directly challenge Goodell on his deception and outright lies.

It’s baffling.

 

Tuesday Quick Hits

Catching up following a recent sojourn to Jamaica…

I like the new formatting for the Boston Globe sports articles. It’s a nice, clean, easy to read look. In a time when  web pages are cramming as much as possible onto a page, it’s nice to be able to see something like this.

HOW BOSTON CAUGHT ARIAN FOSTER FEVER – I enjoyed this piece from Tom E Curran for how he exposed that certain writers allow themselves to be used to carry water for agents. In this case Jason Cole.

Similarly, Mike Reiss gets props for calling out the hypocrisy of the media over the Baltimore Ravens being investigated for a full pads minicamp:

Contrast that with Peter King, who, on the very same subject wrote:

Now this is downright strange. The NFL is investigating the by-the-book Ravens for violating one of the simplest and clearest rules in the collective bargaining agreement: practicing in pads during their rookie minicamp.

The “by-the-book” Ravens, who were previously penalized for something very similar. Got it. Pete doesn’t think this is a big deal, no draft picks will be taken, just a stern talking to should do it.

Kevin Paul Dupont is a Twitter coward and an unabashed troll, but his Saturday piece on CSNNE’s Trenni Kusnierek and her battles with anxiety and depression is definitely worth a read.

Some solid thoughts from Chad Finn on the revamped NESN Red Sox broadcasts. It’s hard to tell if they’re more enjoyable because of the talent or because the team looks like it might not finish in last place this year.

How’d you like to work in NFL PR these days? The league is in a protracted battle with the greatest quarterback it has ever had – over nothing – and got blasted by Former US solicitor general Theodore Olson who is part of Tom Brady’s legal team in a brief filed yesterday, which opens:

“This case arises from an arbitration ruling by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell that undermines the rights and expectations of parties to collective bargaining agreements, and runs roughshod over the rule of law.”

Also yesterday, a Congressional study found that the NFL tried to influence a government concussion research overseen by the National Institutes of Health.

But you can be sure of one thing, all NFL owners, especially Robert Kraft, are going to say that Roger Goodell is doing a great job.

For Whom The Bell Tolls

I realize that Upton Bell has not been relevant for at least 25 years, perhaps he was never relevant, but some Tweets he put out last night really sum up the hotsportztakes movement in a microcosm.

The Red Sox had won 4 in a row heading into last night’s game, were atop the division and have been crushing the ball as of late. So why exactly was Red Sox Nation lonely? Oh, because Price has been really bad this season.

Let’s get this straight: David Price has underachieved thus far so Bell thinks the pressure should be on him to perform. David Ortiz and Jackie Bradley Jr are performing well, so they must be “on something.

It’s the perfect scenario. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. You know, for an old guy, Bell has this hottakez thing down pat.

Now I’ll just go back to ignoring Upton Bell completely.


I received this email late last night regarding Tom Caron’s appearance in the NESN play-by-play seat with Dave O’Brien taking a night off:

…today (May12) is the day to analyze sports (Red Sox)announcer Tom Caron. I have read the comments many viewers gave several years ago (2008-2009). They reflect well the agony I suffer listening to him shout at me as long as he can. Why, in heaven’s name, has he not been told how unattractive and infuriating it is to have to listen to him. Tell: me this: if you invited a guest to a party at your home and he talked like Tom Caron does during all the time he was there, would you invite him again?. I find myself hitting the “Mute” button on the TV for most of the Red Sox Game

I like Caron as the studio host, but would agree that the play-by-play spot isn’t really his strength.


Misc:

I’ll be curious to see if NESN implements the “forced vacations” on O’Brien that they did on Don Orsillo the last few years.

Sean McDonough has perfect bloodlines for marquee NFL job – Chad Finn looks at the new MNF play-by-play man.

Glenn Ordway is bringing back the whiner line to WEEI. It will be on his midday show starting next Friday. Next up, Fred Smerlas and Steve DeOssie everyday during football season?

Wednesday Quickie

Catching up on a couple things from the last week or so…

ESPN made four correct personnel moves in one day?

Moving Sean McDonough to the play-by-play voice of Monday Night Football.

(Reportedly) Not bringing back Cris “Fall Guy” Carter and Ray “White Suit” Lewis.

Adding Randy Moss to NFL Countdown.

What is happening? 

Mike Ditka will also not be back on NFL Countdown, but he will still be around the network. Trent Dilfer could be gone as well, and the uncertain status of Chris Mortensen, due to his illness means that NFL coverage on ESPN could look very different on game days this fall.


I’m not going to try and make the case that David Ortiz is better than Ted Williams was, but nice job by Dan Shaughnessy taking that strawman and using it to write a column dripping with more undertones and suggestions that Ortiz must be using something in order to keep his performance level so high at the age of 40.

There’s no doubt that if Dan Shaughnessy was around in the 1950’s, he’d be trashing Ted Williams in the mold of Dave Egan.

Sure Teddy ballgame can hit the ball, but he’s not nearly the all-around player and man that Tris Speaker was.

The irony of all ironies is Shaughnessy decrying the era of “hot takes.”


Speaking of – you know things are slow in the Patriots hot take business when the topics have been Tom Brady’s cookbook and his mattress commercials.

Seriously.

Sox In First After Sweep of Yankees

It’s May 2nd, and your Boston Red Sox are a half-game in first place in the A.L. East following an 8-7 win at Fenway Park last night.

David Price continued his early season struggles, but again received the run support needed to move to 4-0 on the year.

While the WEEI morning show continues to rail against Curt Schilling’s replacement on Sunday Night Baseball, Jessica Mendoza, ESPN and Schilling continued their dance last night when inexplicably, the network cut out Schilling’s part in the 30 for 30 rebroadcast of Four Days in October last night. Game six, the bloody sock – never happened.

When asked about it, the network responded (somewhat snarkily) that the show was simply edited for time.

I honestly don’t think this was premeditated or some sort of statement from the network on Schilling, but I do think when they were figuring out which segments they could trim for the time requirements, when given a choice between Schilling and non-Schilling, they decided to cut Schilling. Subtly sticking it to him in the process.

When you think of the 2004 ALCS, you think of the Red Sox coming back from 0-3 down of course, you think of the heroics of David Ortiz in games four and five, you think of the blowout game seven, but Schilling and the bloody sock is as memorable as any of those.


For the first time ever, I did not watch a single moment of the NFL draft live. Not a single pick. I saw plenty of what was happening on Twitter, including Kevin Faulk’s all-time classic moment of introducing a Patriots pick while sporting a Tom Brady jersey.

While having Troy Vincent on the stage with Faulk was great, it would’ve been even better with Roger Goodell there instead.

Speaking of Goodell, how do NFL Owners feel having their representative booed endlessly and vociferously, and his response is “bring it on?”

Oh, I forgot. The owners all say Roger is doing a great job. Roger Goodell is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being I’ve ever known in my life.

Meanwhile I saw numerous reports that it sure seemed like ESPN (and sometimes NFLN) was trying awfully hard to not show any of the Patriots picks. Almost makes me wonder if after Faulk’s appearance there was some edict passed down to ensure the Patriots didn’t embarrass the league in that fashion in live TV again. Almost.


Was a little surprised at some blowback I received on Twitter about the job Danny Ainge has done with the Celtics, and whether this season was a failure following the first round 4-2 series loss to the Atlanta Hawks. There seemed to be a common theme among the critics, references to “green teamers” and other Mike Felger references.

The Celtics have steadily improved in the three seasons under Brad Stevens, and have a top pick in the draft in June, and the cap space to attract more than one top free agent this summer. I don’t know what could’ve been done significantly better, especially when you look around the NBA at other rebuilding projects.

The Patriots 2016 Draft Preview Review

Today we present our concise draft coverage review while marveling at how many NFL owners and general managers refused to pay attention during high school physics class.

Patriots “That Guy” 2016 Senior Bowl Edition – It all began on February 1 with our first “That Guy” column of the year, reviewing players we noticed during the Senior Bowl and other college all-star games from late January.

Player Of Note: Quentin Gause of Rutgers could fill one of many draft categories, including Rutgers Guy and Special Teams Guy. The 6-0, 243 pound linebacker led all tacklers at the NFLPA Bowl and had 96 stops in 2015. He was also a team captain and Academic All-Big Ten, among other Pats-Guy-type honors.

Our annual Round-By-Round Review came out on February 10, chronicling all the draft picks by Bill Belichick while in New England, organized by round. Pay special attention to New England’s overall success with Round One selections.

Player Of Note: Whomever the Pats won’t be able to pick this year in Round One. Damnit.

Patriots “That Guy” 2016 NFL Combine Edition – On March 2, our second “That Guy” column of the year came out, focusing on results from the NFL Combine in Indianapolis and where some of those players might fit on New England’s roster.

Player Of Note: You can’t miss the performance of Justin Simmons out of Boston College. The free safety had a 40-inch vertical and a super quick 6.58-second 3-cone drill, all the more impressive given his 6-2, 202-pound frame. Last year for BC, Simmons had 67 tackles, five interceptions, and two forced fumbles.

Combine Snubs Who Showed ‘Em, Part I – Back in the middle of March, we posted Part I of our Combine Snubs series, taking a closer look at players who weren’t invited to the NFL Combine, but who succeeded at their respective pro days in the weeks afterward.

Player Of Note: Keeping Patriots receiver (and former college quarterback) Julian Edelman in mind, QB Jason Vander Laan out of tiny Ferris State absolutely ripped up his Division II slate, winning the Harlan Hill Trophy (D2 Player of the Year) two years running. As a senior, the 6-4, 240-pound QB passed for 2,626 yards and 27 touchdowns and rushed for 1,542 yards and 24 TDs. Also had a noteworthy 6.73-second 3-cone drill.

Combine Snubs Who Showed ‘Em, Part II – On April 19 came our second Combine Snubs review, checking out more players who would have fit in at Indianapolis but didn’t get the invitation.

Player Of Note: Running back Darius Jackson of Eastern Michigan had himself a great pro day. He ran a 4.35-second 40, catapulted 41 inches off the ground, and completed the 3-cone drill in 6.82 seconds, all of which would have made top two or better for combine backs. Jackson rushed for 1,067 yards in 2015, averaging 5.2 yards per carry while scoring 14 TDs on the ground. The best part is that he’s 6-1, 220 pounds, which could fill out New England’s need for a younger, bigger back.

Patriots “That Guy” 2016 April Edition – Finally, on April 21, we ran our last “That Guy” piece of the season, putting together our knowledge from both the combine and pro days.

Player Of Note: Keenan Reynolds. Belichick has to draft the best rusher in Navy history, doesn’t he? Seriously, how could Reynolds not end up in Foxboro, at least for spring practice? He earned solid reports from Senior Bowl practices after his switch to running back. He rushed for 4,559 yards in his career, scoring a Division I record 88 touchdowns. I mean, Belichick will draft this kid just to talk to him on the sideline. And, hey, with uncertainty surrounding the first four games of the season, we could always see the triple option.

Please keep an eye out for our post-draft coverage, where we match up the Patriots’ picks with our “That Guy” predictions.

Much like the NFL from 1920 until 2015, Chris Warner couldn’t care less about air pressure inside a football. He tweets @cwarn89