Celtics

Bean: Kyrie Irving trade holdup makes the Cavaliers look even worse

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Bean: Kyrie Irving trade holdup makes the Cavaliers look even worse

Anybody who was crapping on Kyrie Irving for wanting out of Cleveland can give up now. They no longer have an argument. 

LeBron stuff aside, the holdup in the Cavs and Celtics trade shows what kind of a mess of an operation they’ve got going on in Cleveland. After the Cavaliers traded Irving for a package that included Isaiah Thomas’ well-documented hip issue, there’s a possibility -- however small, but certainly real -- that the Cavs will call off the trade if Boston doesn’t throw in more

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This comes, you know, after both teams agreed to the trade and announced it. As these things always are, the deal was pending physicals, but part of trading for Thomas is knowing that his 2016-17 season was ended three games early by a hip issue from which he hasn’t fully recovered. 

This isn’t to say the Cavs should have taken him no matter what, but his health had to have been discussed in trade negotiations. And really, what’s more likely? 

A. That Danny Ainge, a day after his coach said the team hadn’t yet cleared the player and an hour before he said Thomas’ hip played in his motivation to trade the player, told the Cavs that Thomas was fine. 

B. That the Cavaliers traded for a package that included an injured player and then acted surprised when that injured player was, in fact, injured. 

Given what a mess the organization has been this summer, from the general manager getting dumped to Chauncey Billups staying far away to the whispers-turned-screams that LeBron will bounce next summer, I’m going with B. 

The thing that stinks for the Celtics is that they probably have to acquiesce to Cleveland’s demands, as this trade falling through would be far more difficult for Boston than for the Cavs. If the teams back out of the deal, all Cleveland has is a star player in Irving who wants out, which is exactly what they had before. 

But the Celtics? They’ll have told their best player ahead of his walk year that they preferred someone else at his position while also attempting to trade another long-time member of the team right after their mother’s death. It’s in Ainge’s best interests to get this thing done. 

Of course, that might prove to be harder than expected because of his trade partner. Whatever the additional asset is, it should be minimal — a lottery-protected pick or something like that. Jayson Tatum or Jaylen Brown? Get the hell out of here. 

The Celtics gave up a lot to get a hell of a player. They thought they had him. They probably also thought they were dealing with a competent organization on the other side. They would be wrong. 

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Stevens says Hayward’s ‘spirits were pretty positive’ after surgery

Stevens says Hayward’s ‘spirits were pretty positive’ after surgery

PHILADELPHIA – Thursday was a travel day for the Celtics, but part of the day for Brad Stevens was spent visiting with Gordon Hayward, who underwent successful left ankle surgery that’s expected to keep him out for the rest of the season.
 
“He’s obviously post-surgery, having some of the post-surgery challenges of pain and everything else,” Stevens said. “The surgery went great. His spirits were pretty positive.”

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He is, all things considered, in a very good place.
 
Stevens and the Celtics plan to do all they can to keep Hayward there as he now finds himself in the early stages of rehabilitation.
 
“We talked a little about how to approach the next five months, with maintaining that positivity in different ways to stay engaged, different ways to approach this, to attack this. He was ready to get started with his rehab the minute he got out of surgery.”
 
Eager to help, Stevens reached out to good friend Frank Vogel.
 
Vogel, who now coaches the Orlando Magic, was the coach of the Indiana Pacers when Paul George went down with a season-ending knee injury while playing for Team USA in 2014.

“It’s really important to just be active, to be as active as you can,” Stevens said. “I called Frank Vogel, the day we drove to the gym to play Milwaukee, just asked him what are some of the things Paul did in his year off that you would encourage? What are some of the things that we should look at?”
 
Among the tips he received was to work with Hayward on form shooting while sitting in a chair.
 
“Hey, he’s gonna be the best guy shooting out of a chair with his left hand, right hand, perfect his form,” Stevens said of Hayward. “Let’s have fun, let’s come up with creative ways to attack this.”

With injuries to both ankles, Smart unlikely to play tonight

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With injuries to both ankles, Smart unlikely to play tonight

PHILADELPHIA – Things have only gotten worse for the Celtics on the injury front.
 
Marcus Smart, who replaced an injured Gordon Hayward (left ankle) in the Celtics’ starting lineup, is now unlikely to suit up for tonight’s game against Philadelphia.

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Smart, whose left ankle was heavily wrapped prior to Boston’s shoot-around this morning, said he rolled both ankles in the 108-100 loss to Milwaukee on Wednesday.
 
Celtics coach Brad Stevens said he had not made a decision on who would replace Smart in the Celtics’ starting lineup tonight.
 
“We’ll do some work all day and pre-game and make a final determination,” Stevens said.
 
More to come …