Celtics

Morning Skate: Tuesday, December 18

610718.jpg

Morning Skate: Tuesday, December 18

 Good column from Scott Burnside: there is no winning move as the NHL lockout continues on into Christmas.

 Edmonton Oilers prospect Justin Schultz is on pace for a record-breaking season at the AHL while continuing to prove just how worthy he was of the free agent sweepstakes mania this summer.

 

 Ilya Kovalchuk doesnt think the NHL will be holding a season this year, and seems resigned to be spending the year playing in Russia.

 

 A SportsNet legal eagle says that the NHLPA disclaimer of interest might blow up in the players faces. We shall see. Nobody really knows anything until it hits the court room.

 

 Per FOH (Friend of Haggs) Tracey Myers, Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa has returned to Chicago and is happy to be feeling better.

 

 Sidney Crosby plays goaltender for a ball hockey league and pitches a shutout. That story will go viral3, 2, 1now!

 

 A lead marketing company tells the Globe and Mail that the NHL lockout is doing alarming damage to their brand.

 

 A Providence Bruins magazine for your perusal: stories about Christian Hanson, Carter Camper and Jordan Caron are included.

 For something completely different: Syracuse basketball coach Jim Boeheim turns the end of his press conference into a plea for stricter gun control. I say Bravo.  

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Could Gordon Hayward return this season?

best_of_bst_podcast.jpg

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Could Gordon Hayward return this season?

0:41 - Kyle Draper, Brain Scalabrine, Tommy Heinsohn, and Mike Gorman break down the Celtics loss to the Cavs and Gordon Hayward’s injury.

4:22 - Tom Curran, Michael Holley, Tom Giles, and Kayce Smith give their reactions to the gruesome injury to Gordon Hayward and how it impacted the game.

9:39 - Dr. Chris Chihlas joins BST to give his medical opinion on Gordon Hayward and if he thinks there is a chance Hayward could return this season. 

13:40 - Chris Mannix and A. Sherrod Blakely discuss what the feeling was like in the arena when Hayward went down but how there is actually a 'cautious optimism' surrounding the injury.

Jayson Tatum flashes potential with double-double debut

Jayson Tatum flashes potential with double-double debut

CLEVELAND – Jayson Tatum has seen plenty of games featuring Cleveland’s LeBron James.

And in the Boston Celtics’ preparation for Tuesday night’s matchup, the 19-year-old rookie had seen plenty of James on film.

But facing him, up close and personal, was something entirely different.

“He’s way bigger than I thought,” Tatum said. “He’s way better than I imagined. That’s the reason why he is who he is.”

MORE:

James’ play was among the key factors in Cleveland handing Boston a 102-99 loss on Tuesday night.

But Tatum showed he too has some big-time potential by finishing with a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds which included some nifty drives to the basket as well as showing the ability to hold his own on the glass in terms of rebounding the basketball.

The last Celtics rookie to post a double-double on opening night?

That was Larry Bird back in 1980, helping the Celtics to a 114-106 win over the Houston Rockets.

What’s even crazier?

Bird had 14 points and 10 rebounds in that Rockets game, too.

Tatum’s solid performance didn’t seem in the making in the first half when Tatum had missed all five of his shot attempts while tallying just two points.

But as the Celtics mounted their comeback, Tatum’s play was a key to the team’s improved play.

“Just being more relaxed” was how Tatum described his improved play in the second half.

Tatum added, “first half, I think I was nervous and anxious. And then the game slowed down for me. That helped out a lot.”

And the Celtics will need even more from Tatum going forward after Gordon Hayward’s left ankle injury that will keep him sidelined indefinitely.

There was plenty of room for him to improve upon following Tuesday’s game.

But for the most part, head coach Brad Stevens liked what he saw from the rookie.

“Jayson was pretty good,” Stevens said. “He did a pretty good job for a first game. That’s pretty hard to do, to be thrown into this environment, first game and play that well.”

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE