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Antoine Walker wants to be the next coach of the Boston Celtics

antoine-walkerThe Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Clippers have reportedly agreed to a deal that will release Doc Rivers from his contract and allow him to head west. Boston is likely going to have to rebuild its entire roster heading into next season, starting with the head coach. So who should fill that vacancy?

One brave candidate has stepped forward and thrown his name into the ring. Remember Antoine Walker? Of course you do. He was a fan favorite for a while in Boston thanks in part to the infamous “Walker Wiggle,” and now the former sixth overall pick wants to rejoin his old team as a coach.

And he’s not kidding.

Last we heard from Antoine, he was living with a roommate and had no car after making over $100 million during his NBA career. He could certainly provide a lot of advice for young players on what not to do with money, but there’s no way this is happening.

As for the actual candidates, Vinny Del Negro is one name that has been tossed around already — albeit an incredibly unpopular one. Brian Shaw has been courted by almost every team with a coaching vacancy, and the Celtics are sure to make their pitch as well. Time will tell who will replace Rivers, but we’re confident it won’t be ‘Toine.

H/T Pro Basketball Talk

NBA will reportedly not allow trade between Celtics and Clippers

David-Stern-regrets-Jim-Rome-interviewJust when it appeared the the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Clippers may have been once again working toward a deal, David Stern swooped in to extinguish the flames. Trade talks had reportedly heated up as of Thursday morning, thanks in part to Chris Paul’s desire to play for Doc Rivers. However, it appears the potential deal would violate the terms of the current collective bargaining agreement.

Basically, the issue is that the public knows the two teams are trying to swap Rivers and Kevin Garnett for DeAndre Jordan and draft picks. Per current NBA rules, coaches cannot be “traded” for players. The only way the Clippers could land Rivers is if the Celtics released him from his current contract, which has three years and $21 million remaining on it, and LA signed him. That transaction cannot be part of a bigger trade, nor can any aspect of the trade include any contingencies having to do with it.

From a legal standpoint, the Celtics could have traded Garnett to the Clippers for Jordan and draft picks. Then, they could have released Rivers and allowed him to sign with LA. That would have in theory made everyone happy, except for Stern. Now that the media has exposed the deal and everyone knows it is contingent upon Rivers going west, the commissioner said the league is unlikely to allow it.

“I would say that if we know that what the parties really wanted to do is one [trade] and they’re going to break it into two for the purposes of trying to avoid the restrictions that the collective bargaining agreement places on it, we know how to deal with that as well,” Stern told ESPN’s Colin Cowherd on Thursday.

In a separate interview, Stephen A. Smith asked Stern why the league could not just view the trade and Rivers’ release as two separate deals.

“If you think those [deals], at this point having been all over the media for the last week, are separate transactions, when you get back from Miami, Stephen A., I have a bridge that I would very much enjoy selling to you,” Stern replied.

From the sound of it, there is nothing that can be done at this point. The Celtics and Clippers can’t go back in time and convince the NBA that allowing Rivers to sign with the Clippers has nothing to do with the Garnett-Jordan trade, because we all know that’s not the case. Now we see why players are inclined to make comments like this about Stern and the NBA.

Chris Paul reportedly pressuring Clippers to make deal with Celtics

Vinny-Del-Negro-Chris-Paul-Out-of-ShapeThe Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Clippers may not be done dealing just yet. Earlier this week, LA reportedly rejected Boston’s offer of Kevin Garnett and Doc Rivers for DeAndre Jordan and two first-round picks. It was believed that the Celtics wanted point guard Eric Bledsoe in the deal in addition to Jordan, but that may not be the case anymore.

Instead, the proposed deal — without Bledsoe — is reportedly still on the table and awaiting approval from Clippers owner Donald Sterling. According to Baxter Holmes of the Boston Globe, Chris Paul and his camp have reignited the trade talks by pressuring LA’s front office to pull the trigger on the deal.

League sources reportedly told the Globe that Paul feels two first-round picks and Jordan is a small price to pay for an elite NBA coach and a veteran forward with championship experience. Keep in mind that Paul is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent next month. CP3 was reportedly angry with the team a few weeks ago after he felt they made it look like he was the reason Vinny Del Negro was fired.

While Sterling isn’t exactly the type of owner who would do something simply because a star player tells him to, you would think Paul’s opinion holds some weight. The Clippers need to re-sign Paul, and it sounds like pulling the trigger on the trade with the Celtics would almost guarantee they would be able to do that.

As a side note, Rivers is a player’s coach and was an All-Star point guard doing his playing career. The fact that Paul is excited about the potential of playing for him is hardly a surprise.

Kevin Garnett: Paul Pierce will be a factor in my decision

Paul Pierce Kevin GarnettThe future of the Boston Celtics will be one of the more interesting storylines of the NBA offseason. The team already broke up the Big Three core that helped the franchise win the NBA title in 2007-2008 when they let Ray Allen leave for the Miami Heat in free agency last year. They filled that spot by adding Jason Terry, but the season was derailed by Rajon Rondo’s knee injury. After losing in the first round of the playoffs to the New York Knicks, it looks like Boston’s days as a championship contender are over. GM Danny Ainge now faces the difficult decision about what to do with Paul Pierce.

Pierce is owed $15.3 million next season, but the team can buy him out for $5 million. He said after the Celtics were eliminated from the playoffs on Friday night that he expects to continue playing next season, but he recognizes that the decision about whether or not he’ll be back with Boston is up to Ainge. What happens to Pierce may impact what happens with Kevin Garnett.

Garnett is still under contract with the team for the next two seasons. After the team was eliminated in the playoffs on Friday, he talked about what they needs to do for next season.

“I think we need some additions. Health hit us pretty hard this year, and I’m sure they’re going to address that,” Garnett said, via WEEI’s Ben Rohrbach.

Garnett also said his relationship with Pierce will be a factor in his decision.

“One of the big reasons I came here was because of Paul. Obviously, you want to be in a situation where it’s better. I want to make sure that I’m always able to help a team and be in positions where I’m giving something. I demand a lot from myself, both physically and from a skill level. But I’d be lying to y’all if I said Paul didn’t play into that factor. It’s too soon of a conversation for me right now.”

Garnett is turning 37 and already the highest career earner in the NBA. If the Celtics decide to break up the roster and get rid of Pierce, he might not want to return.

It’s just my personal guess that Ainge will let Pierce go knowing that the Truth is not worth $15.3 million. I don’t know if that will influence Garnett to retire, but I do believe the Celtics’ roster will look a lot different next season.

Below are videos of Pierce and Garnett’s final news conferences:

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Carmelo Anthony: La La has a right to be upset with Jordan Crawford, Celtics

Jordan Crawford Carmelo AnthonyThere is no shortage of bad blood heading into Friday night’s Game 6 matchup between the New York Knicks and Boston Celtics. That became evident after the final buzzer sounded following Game 5 and the two teams had to be separated. At the center of that dust-up were Jordan Crawford and Carmelo Anthony, with Crawford supposedly making deragatory remarks about Carmelo’s wife La La Anthony.

On Thursday, La La seemingly took a shot at Crawford on her Instagram account and called him out for being a benchwarmer. Crawford later denied that he said anything about Mrs. Anthony, but Carmelo seems to think differently.

“I would be upset too if I were her,” Anthony said on Friday, via the NY Daily News. “She always gets thrown into the mix of the Boston Celtics series. So I would be upset. She’s her own person and at the end of the day so she has the right to say what she wants to say.”

Of course, Anthony is referring to the Honey Nut Cheerios incident that took place between him and Kevin Garnett back in January. We have no way of knowing whether Garnett or Crawford actually said something about La La, but there’s usually fire where there’s this much smoke. Also, ‘Melo was about 10 inches from Crawford’s face during Wednesday night’s mix-up.

Anthony is right — his wife does have every right to express herself when she is involuntarily dragged into the rivalry. And we’re glad she did, because it’s just one more thing that adds to the hatred these two teams already feel toward one another.

Knicks wore black to Game 5 for Celtics’ funeral, then got buried

Knicks black funeralKenyon Martin encouraged his New York Knicks teammates to wear black to Madison Square Garden to symbolize their plans to end the Boston Celtics’ season with a funeral, but they were the ones who got buried.

The whole funeral talk began because of an exchange between Martin and the Celtics’ Jason Terry before Game 4.

“The guy was mouthing off before the game,” Kenyon Martin told the New York Daily News after Game 4. “[Terry] told me, ‘You’re not dancing at my funeral today.’’’

In response, Martin told his Knicks teammates to wear black to Wednesday’s game, which they lost 92-86. JR Smith said after the game that they were the ones who got buried.

“Well we was going to a funeral but it looked like we got buried,” JR Smith said, via NJ.com. “It’s all part of being humbled and basketball is a very humbling game.

“I’m done with this black stuff,” Smith told NJ.com. “I’m a superstitious person. I’m going to go back to my old routine.”

Meanwhile, Martin refused to talk about the black clothing when asked about it after the game. He even flashed the look of death at the reporter after being pressed on it:

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JR Smith: Celtics don’t know what to do without Rajon Rondo

The Boston Celtics have put themselves in a tough spot against the New York Knicks as they head back home. The age of Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and company was evident in the first two games of the playoffs, as they were unable to close out games or come up with answers late in the fourth quarter. Fatigue has clearly been a factor, but we must also remember that the Celtics have been missing Rajon Rondo.

Without Rondo, who is out for the season after tearing his ACL, Boston has not been able to keep up with New York’s speed. The Celtics scored 78 points in their Game 1 loss to the Knicks and only 71 in Game 2. JR Smith believes that has a lot to do with the absence of Rondo.

“When Rondo is out there, they are in a certain flow,” Smith told Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix. “When he is not out there, they sort of don’t know who to go to or [what] plays to run. That’s a credit to a great player like Rondo. When he is in the game, he seems to know two or three plays ahead of what they want to do.”

There were points throughout the regular season when the Celtics appeared to be chugging along and talking head radio hosts claimed they were better off without Rondo. That couldn’t be further from the truth, and the Knicks are proving that.

Boston scored only 23 points in the second half of Game 2 against New York — the fewest in the team’s playoff history. If Rondo was in the lineup, that would never happen. Not only that, but Raymond Felton and Smith would not be nearly as effective as they have been if both Rondo and Avery Bradley were healthy.

Smith may say some incredibly dumb things, but he’s spot-on this time. Without Rondo, the Celtics have been lost against the Knicks.

H/T Eye on Basketball
Photo credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports