Celtics

Arroyo ready to heat up second unit for Celtics

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Arroyo ready to heat up second unit for Celtics

By A.Sherrod Blakely
CSNNE.com

BOSTON Carlos Arroyo is no different than any other newcomer to the Boston Celtics.

Coach Doc Rivers understands there's a lot of information to digest quickly, so he tends to give them a few pieces of the playbook at a time.

But something unexpected happened in Wednesday's 108-103 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers.

"He came down and called a play that we hadn't put in for him, but he knew the team ran it. I thought, 'Man this guy is pretty good,' " Rivers said.

Wednesday night's outcome was clearly not what the Celtics or Arroyo were looking for against the Clippers. But, considering it was Arroyo's first game, both he and the C's were pleased with how things went.

Arroyo had four points, three rebounds and two assists while playing just over 15 minutes.

His assists numbers would have been higher if some of his open teammates didn't miss open jumpers or point-blank lay-ups.

"I was just trying to do my job out there," Arroyo said. "Stay aggressive, stay solid and make the right plays on offense and defense, be as helpful as I could be."

So far, so good.

And unlike the Celtics point guards in the past couple of years, Arroyo brings a resume that speaks volumes about his ability to not just fit in, but be one of the team's veteran leaders.

"As a point guard, you are automatically thrust into a leadership role because you are out there calling plays, at the top of the ball," Pierce said.

And it's a role that Arroyo doesn't shy away from, even as he continues to learn the ins and outs of playing for the Celtics.

"It's my job to control the tempo out there," Arroyo said. "Get guys involved, get them in the right spots. But myself, I'm trying to learn the plays as it is. Hopefully by Friday I'll be much better. I try not to put a lot of pressure on myself and take it day by day."

So far, his first game with the Celtics was a huge success.

"We got a consolidator," said Kevin Garnett. "We got another guy that can be the floor general. Carlos played in this league for a long time, for a lot of head-strong coaches. He brings a sense of leadership, a lot of respect in our locker room for him and we're glad he's here."

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached atsblakely@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Jayson Tatum vs. Markelle Fultz debate

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BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Jayson Tatum vs. Markelle Fultz debate

0:41 - Michael Holley, Tom Giles, and Kayce Smith give their reactions on the Celtics getting their first win of the season and a comparison between Isaiah Thomas and Kyrie Irving in the 4th quarter.

7:17 - Phil Perry joins BST to break down the tale of the tape between the Falcons and the Patriots as he breaks down the quarterbacks, offense, defense, coaching, and intangibles between the two teams.

11:57 - Our crew on BST discuss number 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz and number 3 overall pick Jayson Tatum going up against each other and debate who seems like the better pick so far. 

16:35 - In this segment of Irrelevant Questions, Tom Curran interviews Patriots WR Phillip Dorsett as he asks him a bunch of random questions. 

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Larkin rises to occasion, says he's ready when Celtics call his number

Larkin rises to occasion, says he's ready when Celtics call his number

PHILADELPHIA – Near the end of a preseason game against Charlotte, Boston Celtics guard Shane Larkin was killin’ the Hornets with pick-and-roll action.

It was a preseason game that at the time, didn’t seem to have much value other than to get some of the end-of-the-bench guys a little run up and down the court.

But as it turned out, Larkin's play in that game was one of those things head coach Brad Stevens tucked away, knowing at some point he would count on Larkin to provide similar play in a regular season game.

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Well, that game was Friday night at Philadelphia, a game in which several players for Boston stepped their games up in helping the Celtics get their first win of the season, 102-92.

But you would be hard-pressed to find a bigger game-changer for the Celtics in this game, than Larkin.

He finished with 10 points off the bench, eight of which came in the decisive fourth quarter when the Celtics rallied from five-down to get a hard-fought, much-needed victory.

“You have to always be ready for your name to be called, especially when you have injuries,” Larkin said. “You never know whose night it’s gonna be.”

Boston was playing without Marcus Smart who suffered a left ankle sprain in their 108-100 loss to Milwaukee on Wednesday. Smart was in the starting lineup having replaced Gordon Hayward who underwent left ankle surgery and is expected to be out for the remainder of this season.

“When coach (Stevens) called my name, I had to go out there and be aggressive, play my game,” Larkin said. “And it worked in our favor.”

And while Stevens had watched Larkin play prior to the Celtics signing him this summer, it was a preseason game against Charlotte that really convinced him that the 5-foot-11 guard could help when called upon.

“You’re always watching,” Stevens said. “And if you remember that exhibition game, he finished out that Charlotte game, just running simple spread pick-and-rolls. He’s such a handful with his speed and quickness, and he allows other guys to play off of him. He’s a small guy, but he makes up for it with his speed and skill.”

Al Horford benefited more than any other Celtic with Larkin’s pick-and-roll play which factored into Horford scoring nine of his 17 points in the fourth.

“Shane is a player who understands the game and for us, it was me trying to set a good screen for him and having him make a play,” Horford said. “He just made the right reads, when to shoot it, when to pass it. He just looked very comfortable in that position.”

And to think that Larkin’s big game came about in part because of how well he performed in a preseason matchup against the Hornets.

“I did not know it was that specific game,” Larkin said. “But whenever I step on the court I try to do my best. That’s offensively, defensively, and do what the team needs me to do.

Larkin added, “Whenever my number is called, if he (Stevens) calls it again, I hope he does. I’ll be ready to go out there and do it again.”

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