Celtics

How about them Heatles?!

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How about them Heatles?!

They lost by not one, not two, not three, but 19 POINTS last night in Indiana, and in the process, provided the Heat Haters with ammunition for days. Or at least two, at which point Miami will re-take the court and either right their shaky ship or slam into an iceberg.

Right now, it certainly feels like theyre heading towards the latter, but we all know better than to assume that much. The way things go, Miami's just as likely to re-group and win a title as they are to choke away another post season. And as fans, the best thing we can do is borrow a mind eraser from one of those million Men In Black 3 ads, take it to the head and move on with clear, unbiased conscience.

However, there was one aspect of Miamis Game 3 debacle that especially as it relates to the Celtics is worth a closer look.

The third quarter altercation between Dwyane Wade and Erik Spoelstra.

If you didn't catch it, here's the video. In it, you'll see Wade and Spo on the sidelines, face-to-face in a heated conversation. After a few seconds, Wade dismissively nudges Spoelstra aside and walks away with his recently trademarked sourpuss. At this point, Spoelstra shoots out one more verbal dagger, which clearly hits home, and leads Wade to circle back around to get in his coach's face. Thankfully (for the Heat), team grandfather Juwan Howard intercepts Wade, and the Captain settles on bitching out his coach from a far.

And that's a wrap. It was a beautiful thing. Just another step in Wade's transformation from the only likable piece of Miami's super team to the main source anger and hatred. Congrats, Dwyane!

Anyway, I said I'd bring this back to the Celtics, so here we go: At this point, it's obviously too early and altogether ridiculous to speculate about a CelticsHeat Eastern Conference Finals. It seemed so easy before the second round got under way, but now that we're in the thick of things you know, both teams have other stuff to worry about.

BUT, we're human. Even if both the C's and especially the Heat have their hands full, you can't help let your mind wander to that would-be ECF. I think it's still the most likely match-up. Deep down, I think it's still the outcome that we all want to see.

Miami vs. Boston.

One last hurrah. And if we ever get there, here's one undeniable advantage in the Celtics corner: The relationship with their coach.

As we're well aware, the Celtics would do anything for Doc Rivers. They'd take a charge. Run through a wall. Would they kill a man? YES. Anything. And when the game, the season, contracts, careers and legacies are the line regardless of any sort of drama that may be swirling around the locker room the Celtics believe in their coach.

And while one ugly incident doesnt say everything about the relationship between Dwyane Wade and Erik Spoelstra, or Spoelstra and the rest of the team, it does say a lot.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Agent doesn't expect Gordon Hayward to return this season, but foresees full recovery

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Agent doesn't expect Gordon Hayward to return this season, but foresees full recovery

PHILADELPHIA --  Only hours removed from surgery to repair a dislocated left ankle and fractured fibia injury, Gordon Hayward’s agent tells NBC Sports Boston that his client is already attacking the rehab process.
 
“We expect him to have a full recovery,” agent Mark Bartelstein said via phone Thursday.
 
That said, Bartelstein also noted that it’s unlikely that the 6-foot-8 forward will return to action this season.
 
“We don’t have a timetable or anything like that for him,” Bartelstein said. “It’s about getting better, healthier every day.”
 
The Celtics released a statement Thursday afternoon indicating Hayward underwent successful “bony and ligamentous stabilization surgery for the fracture dislocation of his left ankle.”
 
Performing the surgery was Drs. Mark Slovenkai and Brian McKeon at New England Baptist Hospital, with Dr. Anthony Schena assisting followed by consultations with Dr. David Porter of Methodist Sports Medicine in Indianapolis.
 
Hayward suffered the injury in the first quarter of Boston’s 102-99 loss at Cleveland on Tuesday when he was attempting to catch a lob pass from Kyrie Irving.
 
On the play, Hayward landed awkwardly on his ankle, which contorted in a way where it was clear immediately that he would be out of action for a significant amount of time.
 
Since the injury, Hayward has received an amazing amount of outpouring of well-wishes and prayers from Kobe Bryant, Julian Edelman, Rob Gronkowski and a cast of other current and former athletes. Both Edelman and Gronkowski know all too well about the challenges associated with returning to play after an injury.
 
"Go into rehab just like you go into anything else: dominate it," Gronkowski said. "Come back when you feel ready. Come back when you’re 100 percent. He wouldn’t be where he is now if he wasn’t a hard worker.”
 
And then there are the Celtics fans, whose support has been impressive.
 
Hayward delivered a pre-recorded message to the fans at the TD Garden that was aired on the Jumbotron high above half court prior to Wednesday night’s game against Milwaukee. Even after the video ended, there was no escaping Hayward’s presence was still very much in the building and on the minds of fans.
 
At one point in the 108-100 Celtics loss on Wednesday, Boston fans began a “Gor-don Hay-ward!” chant that soon swept its way throughout the TD Garden.
 
“It has been a bit overwhelming the amount of support that Gordon has received,” Bartelstein said. “It touched him in so many ways. The outpouring he got, certainly all the fans in the arena last night, from players around the league … it meant the world to him. And obviously, going through something like this, it’s devastating. So, to see so many reach out to him, it means the world to him and his family; there’s no doubt about it.”