Celtics

Kendrick Perkins would 'absolutely' consider Celtics assistant coach role

Kendrick Perkins would 'absolutely' consider Celtics assistant coach role

Kendrick Perkins' window to return to the Boston Celtics as a player has essentially closed. But what if he joins the team that drafted him as a coach?

The Celtics have an open assistant coach position vacated by Micah Shrewsberry, who left for Purdue earlier this month. In an interview Thursday on "The Danny Picard Show", Perkins was asked if he'd be interested in filling that vacancy. 

"Absolutely. There’s certain things you can’t turn down, and that’s one of them," Perkins told host Danny Picard.

The former NBA center, who spent his first eight NBA seasons with the Celtics, said in 2017 he'd "love to coach" after he finished playing and considered joining the Cleveland Cavaliers' coaching staff that year before signing on as a player.

Perkins confirmed last October he spoke to Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge about ending his playing career in Boston. A deal never materialized, though, and there are no signs the Celtics -- who reportedly interviewed J.B. Bickerstaff for the assistant coach opening Wednesday -- have spoken to Perkins about a coaching gig.

But Perkins is putting in the work coaching up draft prospects at the NBA Scouting Combine, and if an opportunity arises to coach in Boston, it sounds like he'd jump on it.

"I mean, you'd have no choice but to accept a job like that, man," he added.

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Larry Bird receives lifetime achievement award at 2019 NBA Awards

Larry Bird receives lifetime achievement award at 2019 NBA Awards

The Magic-Bird rivalry had another moment in the spotlight on Monday at the 2019 NBA Awards.

Both Larry Bird and Earvin "Magic" Johnson were honored with the lifetime achievement awards by the NBA.

The awards were absolutely deserved by both players. The duo reignited the Boston Celtics vs. Los Angeles Lakers rivalry in the 1980s and from 1980-88, either Bird's Celtics or Johnson's Lakers were in the NBA Finals, and they squared off in three series. And in that time span, either the Celtics or Lakers captured eight of the nine NBA titles, which is absolutely remarkable.

Bird was one of the greatest Celtics of all-time. He averaged 24.3 points, 10 rebounds, and 6.3 assists per game over the course of his 13-year career with the Celtics. He is top-five for the team in most major statistical categories including points, rebounds, assists, blocks, and steals. He truly was a game changer and had many moments of greatness throughout his career.

And after his playing career was over, Bird became a very good head coach with the Indiana Pacers and later ran their front office. He won a Coach of the Year in his first season with the Pacers (1998) and also took home the NBA Executive of the Year in 2012.

Bird is simply one of the greatest basketball players, and minds, that the sport has ever seen. Between his statistical prowess, his three titles, two Finals MVPs, three NBA MVPs, and his resume as a coach and front office executive, it's easy to see why the NBA wanted to honor him. And doing it along with his long-time rival, Johnson, just made the moment sweeter for the highly accomplished and revolutionary duo.

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Marcus Smart wins NBA's Hustle Award

Marcus Smart wins NBA's Hustle Award

On a night where the Celtics weren't up for many 2018-19 NBA awards, Marcus Smart took home a prize that would have made Red Auerbach smile. 

Smart won the NBA's Hustle Award, which couldn't have been a better way to recognize his play last season and over his entire career with the Celtics. He was also named to the NBA's First All-Defensive team for the first time, and it'd be surprising if it was the last. 

Smart had the best all-around year of his career in 2018-19. After signing a four-year contract to stay with the team that drafted him sixth overall in 2014, he shot a career-high 36.4 percent from three to go along with his consistently superb defensive output.

On a team that lacked the heart and will to win in the face of adversity, Smart represented the kind of wherewithal Celtics fans hoped the rest of the roster would show night in and night out. Unfortunately, that didn't happen, and it contributed to the team's ultimate demise in the second round against the Bucks. 

The Celtics came up empty handed in the marquee awards Monday night. Al Horford came in third place in the NBA's Sportsmanship Award voting. 

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