Celtics to face Rockets, Kings for first time


Celtics to face Rockets, Kings for first time

By Jessica Camerato

The Boston Celtics wrapped up their regular-season series against the Toronto Raptors on Friday. The following day, they played their third game against the Chicago Bulls.

After already playing 11 teams more than twice this season, the Celtics will face new competition this week when the Houston Rockets and Sacramento Kings come to town.

Houston Rockets (16-21)
Monday, January 10

Team Leaders
Scoring - Kevin Martin: 23.2 points per game
Rebounds - Luis Scola: 8.2 rebounds per game
Assists - Kyle Lowry: 6.8 assists per game

Last Season: The Celtics split their two-game series with the Rockets. The Cs won in Houston, 94-87, behind 15 fourth-quarter points from Paul Pierce (26 total). The Rockets then defeated the Celtics, 119-114, in overtime in Boston. Aaron Brooks scored a game-high 30 points.
Skidding In: The Rockets are currently on a five-game losing streak and have not won since beating the Raptors on New Years Eve. During the skid, they have lost by an average of 8.8 points to the Portland Trail Blazers (twice), Denver Nuggets, Orlando Magic, and Utah Jazz.

Dishing Dimes: The Celtics (24.6 apg) and Rockets (23.8 apg) are the top two teams in assists per game this season. Rajon Rondo leads the Cs - and the league - with 13.4, while Kyle Lowry has averaged 6.8 for the Rockets.
Familiar Faces for Wafer: Von Wafer played for the Rockets during the 2008-09 season (9.7 ppg, 44.7 FG). His time with the team, however, was marred after being ejected from the bench by coach Rick Adelman during a playoff game against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Sacramento Kings (8-26)
Wednesday, January 12

Team Leaders
Scoring - Tyreke Evans: 17.2 points per game
Rebounds: DeMarcus Cousins: 7.6 rebounds per game
Assists - Tyreke Evans: 5.4 assists per game
Last Season: The Celtics swept last series, 2-0, and have won their last six games against Sacramento. The Cs beat the Kings on the road, 95-92, with 44 points from the bench. They also won at TD Garden, 94-86, as Rajon Rondo dished 18 assists and set the franchise record for steals in a single season.
Power at the Point Guard: Tyreke Evans posted 17 points, 11 rebounds, and 7 assists in the one game he played against the Celtics last season (he was injured during the other). This season he is averaging 17.2 points, 5.4 assists, and 4.7 rebounds per game. After battling Derrick Rose on Saturday, Rajon Rondo will have his hands full with Evans.

Young Talent Down Low: After an inconsistent start, rookie DeMarcus Cousins has been settling in offensively. He is averaging 21.8 over the last five games while grabbing nine rebounds during that stretch. Cousins has faced several off-the-court issues, however, including arguing with his coach. A high pressure game on a big stage will be a test for the 20-year-old center.
Champion Returns at the Helm: Former Celtic Paul Westphal returns to Boston as the head coach of the Kings. Westphal was a member of the Cs from 1972-75 and won a championship in 1974.

Stats as of January 9, 2011
Follow Jessica Camerato on Twitter at http:www.twitter.comjcameratonba

Does Kyrie regret exchange with fan in Philly? 'Hell, no'


Does Kyrie regret exchange with fan in Philly? 'Hell, no'

WALTHAM, Mass. – The NBA has talked with  Celtics guard Kyrie Irving about disparaging comments he made to a fan at halftime that have since gone viral.

Irving said the incident happened as the Celtics were heading back to the locker room at halftime after the Celtics fell behind 50-46 to the Sixers.


“Kyrie, where’s LeBron?” yelled the fan.

Irving replied with a lewd suggestion. 

After practice on Saturday, Irving acknowledged that he did say something to a fan and that he had a conversation with the league regarding the incident.


“Hell no,” Irving said. “Man enough to record it on video, that’s on him. I’m glad he got his ad name out there, and his five seconds of fame and it’s gone viral. That’s the social media platform we live on.

Irving added, “I take full responsibility for what I said. You move on.”

The league has not officially announced a fine for Irving, but it’s more a matter of when not if that will be forthcoming.

In fact, earlier today, the league fined New Orleans Pelicans center DeMarcus Cousins $25,000 for “inappropriate language” towards a fan in the Pelicans’ 103-91 loss at Memphis on Wednesday.

Celtics coach Brad Stevens had not seen the video in question but was aware that Irving had been in conversations with the league office regarding the incident.

“Guys know what the right thing to do is,” Stevens said. “People make mistakes; hopefully learn from them and move on. There’s a right and wrong. And if you’re in the wrong you have to own up to it and that’s that.”