Celtics

Montrezl Harrell's dunk on Grant Williams prompted a rare Brad Stevens burn

Montrezl Harrell's dunk on Grant Williams prompted a rare Brad Stevens burn

BOSTON -- Grant Williams is the rookie the Celtics love to rib.

But even we didn't expect Brad Stevens to join in on the fun.

In the second overtime of Boston's slugfest with the Clippers at TD Garden, Williams matched up with Los Angeles forward Montrezl Harrell -- who promptly detonated on the Celtics rookie with a monster dunk.

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Harrell's dunk was so impressive that even the diplomatic Stevens couldn't resist jabbing Williams for being on the wrong end.

"We had to check to make sure Grant was still alive after Harrell dunked all over him," the Celtics coach said. "Other than that I thought he did a lot of good things."

Was that the meanest thing Stevens has ever said?

Fortunately for the Celtics, Williams survived Harrell's posterization enough to be a serviceable overtime fill-in with Daniel Theis fouled out and Enes Kanter nursing a hip injury he sustained earlier in the game.

Unfortunately for Williams -- who finished with zero points and five fouls but added a rebound, a block and a steal -- his efforts earned him some physical abuse in addition to Stevens' verbal abuse.

The 21-year-old is taking his lumps in stride, though, and was pleased to get crunch-time minutes in Boston's 141-133 victory in double OT.

"I didn't play well tonight, so I'm glad coach [Stevens] had the trust to put me in," Williams told NBC Sports Boston's Chris Forsberg after the game.

Adam Silver won't make a decision on NBA return until May at the earliest

Adam Silver won't make a decision on NBA return until May at the earliest

The Boston Celtics haven't played since March 10 against the Indiana Pacers as the sports world has been put on hold amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

And it doesn't look like the NBA has any answers about when the league could be targeting a return to action.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver stated in a recent interview that he doesn't have a better answer about when the league might be back. He said that he wouldn't be able to make a decision about the potential return of the league until May 1 at the earliest, according to Tim Bontemps of ESPN,.

Obviously, that's bad news for any who are hoping that basketball will return soon. Because even if a decision can be made on May 1, it will likely take time for the league to implement whatever strategy they choose to get up and running again.

Beyond that, players may need time to get tuned up. In a recent interview, Enes Kanter said that he expects players will need 2-to-3 weeks to work their way back into game shape and for that reason, the league can't just jump back into the playoffs. So, that's another factor that the NBA has to take into account.

The main takeaway from this news is that we still don't know when the NBA -- or any other sport, for that matter -- will return. It's going to be fluid and it will take some time to figure out, but at least NBA aficionados will have the May 1 target date as a time that an answer could possibly come.

Who should represent Celtics in NBA's H-O-R-S-E competition?

Who should represent Celtics in NBA's H-O-R-S-E competition?

The NBA is reportedly working on a televised H-O-R-S-E competition to keep us entertained while the season is suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Celtics have a rather obvious choice for an entrant into that competition: Marcus Smart.

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The sixth-year guard has made trick shots his trademark, ending each pregame warmup by launching a deep baseline 3-pointer over his head until he makes one (and it usually doesn’t take many attempts). It's far from the only trick in Smart's toolbox — just check out the video above of Smart showing Brian Scalabrine some of his favorite shots from earlier this season.

Heck, Smart might be a favorite to win the event if he entered. Still, rather than make the obvious choice, we huddled up to pick some other possible Celtics entrants.

BLAKELY’S PICK: JAYSON TATUM

Jayson Tatum isn’t just Boston’s best scorer. But he’s also one of the team’s most creative ones as well. We know about the step-back jumpers and drives to the basket, but the trickster in Tatum comes out every now and then. 

And one of the few times we’ve seen this was during a stop in play during February’s All-Star Game when Tatum drained this over-the-back, off-the-top of the backboard shot that was nothing but net.

It’s safe to say that Tatum has that shot and a few more in his back of basketball tricks. 

FORSBERG’S PICK: TACKO FALL

The 7-foot-5 Fall would make it seem like he’s playing on a mini hoop with his height advantage.

He could wear down opponents with an array of baby hook shots and flat-footed dunks that would be more challenging for his regular-sized competition. Plus, everything is undeniably more entertaining when Fall is involved.

And anyone that thinks they can just sneak out to the 3-point line to beat him should think again:

BLAKELY’S PICK: JAVONTE GREEN

Javonte Green is the most athletic player on the Celtics roster.

So when it comes to trick shots, you can count on Green providing some above-the-rim exploits that will surely wow fans and — maybe most important — be extremely difficult for anyone competing against him to replicate.

FORSBERG’S PICK: ENES KANTER

Finally, all those hours that Kanter spent on TikTok would pay dividends as he enters the competition with an encyclopedic knowledge of circus shots.

Sure, he’s in trouble if Steph Curry-types start bombing away with simple 25-footers but the scales tip in favor of Kanter if the competition turns into a series of shots that must bounce off three walls or be punted through the cylinder.

In the ultimate quest to become a social media legend, Kanter dominates the competition, posts each of his successful makes on available platforms, and rakes in the followers.

Click here to listen and subscribe to The Enes Kanter Show Podcast — or watch it on YouTube.