CelticThunder Blog

Welcome to FLCeltsFan's Celtic Thunder blog. I plan to list a very eclectic variety of posts here concerning both of my favorite teams and especially my favorite player- Kendrick Perkins. I hope you will enjoy your visit and come back soon.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Beast and Fam on a Beast


Celtics Links for Today 9/29

Herald  KG says he has lost Ray’s number
Talking KG and Darko as Celts hold media day
Green and Wilcox forge a rare bond
C’s got a ‘Ticket’ to ride
Rajon Rondo’s still the leader
Allen exit turns up Heat on rivalry
Darko Milicic sees bright days ahead
Ray Allen settling into new city, new role with Heat

Scowls and Smiles

There aren't two players in the league who scowl better than KG and Perk. Both are intimidating and both keep their game faces on the whole time they are on the court. It's no wonder that the two bonded while they were teammates.
But off the court, both are nice guys. Both can flash a 100 watt smile. We don't see them much but here's the evidence.

Enjoy the smiles. It's almost GAME TIME and then it's time for the game face!!!

Happy Birthday to Kevin Durant

A Happy Birthday today to Kevin Durant!!   Keyon Dooling recently called KD the best player in the league and I would agree with him. 
 Take good care of him Perk!! 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Celtics Links for Today 9/28

Herald  For C’s, it starts with Doc Rivers
Five Celtics things to watch
NBA aims to stop flopping
Globe  Rajon Rondo is top Celtics player in ESPN NBA rankings
Globe 10.0 - Will Rondo be more of a leader?
Boston Celtics open training camp on Friday
Celtics Green  The Victory Cigar
Dooling: Rondo's the Second Best Player in the League
It's Deja Vu All Over Again
Flopping Policy This Season?
Random Thoughts on Media Day and the Refs

Ut Oh! Referees Making Changes

Reports out of the referees pre-season meetings are that they are going to be emphasizing calling illegal screens this season.  That could be a problem for one of the best screeners in the league that we all know and love.   Perk sets some great screens, but I have to admit, some of them are bordering on illegal.  I'm hoping this doesn't mean that Perk will be in foul trouble 5 minutes into every game.  

The refs have announced that they will also be enforcing their bogus respect for the game rules even more this season.  I'm wondering if that means that Perk will get more technicals for the look on his face as he did a couple of times in Boston.   Let's hope that Perk's scowl doesn't become a technical foul. 

 They will also be calling flagrant fouls on the floor and will no longer be differentiating between flagrant 1 and flagrant 2 fouls.  So I guess this means no more ejections for a flagrant.  After the fact,  upon review by the league office, any flagrant will be then classified as a flagrant 1, flagrant 2, technical, or downgraded to a regular foul.  Could be interesting.

And they aren't just picking on Perk,  KD's rip move is going to continue to get extra treatment and won't be called as a foul.  They said that last season, but then ended up calling it anyway half the time. 

They are also going to address flopping.  Good you say as you recall LeBron flopping his way through the playoffs.  But they aren't going to address it in games, they  are going to review all games the following day when they can look at it from different angles and include a player's intent and reputation and then make the call.  If a player is deemed to have flopped, the penalty is likely to be a fine.  But as Ken Berger opines, this could cause some very sticky situations.
Some will like the league's answer to flopping, and others will say it's not enough. And while I recognize the benefit of taking it out of the referees' hands, the new approach -- if adopted -- could open up a whole new can of worms in a sports environment that clearly does not tolerate officiating incompetence. Suppose LeBron James drives to the basket on the final possession of a playoff game, with the Miami Heat trailing by a point. He misses the shot, but dupes the official into calling a shooting foul by flopping. James sinks both free throws, the Heat win the game and advance to the next round. But what happens when the league fines James $25,000 the next morning for flopping on the play? What the league would be saying, essentially, is that James shouldn't have been awarded free throws and the Heat shouldn't have won. Chaos, would ensue, as it often does with these controversies -- be it a disputed Hail Mary in the end zone or a superstar call late in an NBA game.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Perk Will Probably Miss the Preseason

I know that Perk said that his groin was fine after the surgery this summer. But, he was wearing a brace on his wrist at the community event recently. The wrist still isn't 100%. Knowing Perk, he'd want to be out there playing right from the first game. I mean the guy did play through 3 series with a torn groin muscle and an injured wrist. And, that's without a single complaint or excuse. I hope he waits till he's completely healed to play. I can't wait to see him scowling his way up the court again but want the scowl to be because he hates the opponent and not because his wrist is still hurting.

Celtics Links for Today 9/26

Herald  Celts wonder about Darko Milicic
Ainge: Rondo has proven he’s our best player
Kevin Love: ‘I have faith in this team’
Nets GM Billy King optimistic about revamped roster

Paul Pierce, Ed Norton to play ‘Words with Friends’ charity
Clippers player pleads no contest in driving case
Globe  Celtics get training camp started early
Roster focus: Courtney Lee
Roster focus: Fab Melo -Celtics blog
Brooklyn, Barclays Center bracing to steal show
Celtics Green  ESPN Puts Rondo at #12 in Their Rankings
Jared Sullinger Joins the Jordan Brand
Celtics Interviews from Today's Golf Tourney
Random Thoughts on Chemistry and Rookies

Gerald Green Doing Good Things

I always try to keep an eye on some of the kids we draft and then trade. Gerald Green was a favorite of mine when he was with the Celtics. He was a good kid, but too immature to make it when he was first drafted. After several years in Russia, I'm very happy to see a much matured Gerald making it again in the NBA. He played well enough with the Nets last season that he got a nice 3 year $10 million contract with the Pacers this season. I still think he was robbed on that Birthday Candle dunk. Anyway, Pacers Coacj, Frank Vogel has some good things to say about Gerald in an Indy Star article. I'm pulling for Gerald to do well. It's that "once a Celtic always a Celtic" thing that Red started. (exception to which I would add Ray Allen who snubbed his nose at the Celtics- he never really was a true Celtic to do what he did)   I wonder if Gerald kept any of his #5 jerseys.  I mean, how many people can say that they were traded for Kevin Garnett and that KG chose their number to wear?   Here's the quote from Vogel:
“Gerald Green is doing things everyday I didn’t think was possible for human beings to do. D.J. has really blown me away in the limited time that he’s been here in terms of his ability to create and make others better. That’s a unique talent to have. Literally on almost every possession he makes somebody better with his passing.”

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Perk is Ranked at #8 on Thunder

Daily Thunder is ranking the Thunder players from 15 on down to 1. Perk falls in at #8.
8. Kendrick Perkins | C | Age: 27 | #NBARank: 120

Somehow, a defensive-minded, role-playing center has become Oklahoma City’s most polarizing player. There are the Perk apologists, the ones that revere his toughness, his screen-setting, intangibles, his locker room presence, his leadership and all of that other crap. There are the Perk haters, the ones that gripe about his clumsy plodding, about his complete lack of any offensive ability, about how overrated he is as a defender and a rebounder.

And then there’s the middle, where I fall. You always have to take Perk for what he is. If you expect more, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment and anger. He’s a bad offensive player that is only useful for a hard screens, easy dunks and an occasional slick touch-pass. He’s a strong bruiser that definitely sets a defensive tone inside and holds teammates accountable. You don’t cross Perk. I’ve seen it up close and in person. You. Don’t. Do. It.

His value comes in extremes. Against Andrew Bynum, Marc Gasol and Dwight Howard, there might not be a better post defender. Against a fleet-footed smallball unit, he struggles. And that’s not on him always. It’s often on Scott Brooks to make sure he’s putting Perk in situations he can succeed in. It’s not fair to take blind man and ask him to find Waldo. There’s an Einstein quote that says, “Everybody’s a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree it will live its whole life believing its stupid.” Applicable to Perk.

Sometimes Perk excels against all odds, like he did the final four games against the Spurs. But for the most part, he’s a specialist, best deployed against a dominant post. Use him wisely and he’s a tremendous asset that few teams have. Just blindly run him out against any lineup with the expectation he’s going to do his job all the same and you’re going to be forced to gripe. The question isn’t about his rebounding or scoring or whatever. It’s about if he contributes to winning. Are the Thunder better off with him on the floor, or without him? That’s the bar you should judge Perk by. The answer? Depends on who he’s guarding.
It's pretty obvious that I fall in the first group.  I love Perk.  I see Perk's value to a team that goes way beyond the box score and beyond what most players are measured by.  And I absolutely agree that you don't cross Perk.  And, Perk is most appreciated and missed when you don't have him any more.  Be careful Thunder.  Appreciate this guy and keep him because if you let him go, you'll realize too late that the first group is definitely right. 

Celtics Links For Today 9/25

Herald  Timberwolves agree to terms with PF Amundson
Tony DiLeo ready to call the shots as 76ers GM
In Las Vegas, the Lakers are rated as best bets
Globe Doc Rivers: Avery Bradley 'nowhere near ready'
Roster focus: Courtney Lee
Celtics Green  That Answers My Questions About Rondo Plus a Few Others
Coach Heinsohn - Tommy's True Genius
Swapping Darko and Stiemsma
All I Ever Needed To Know I Learned on Twitter

Friday, September 21, 2012

Perk's Value Goes Beyond Stats

I came across this article in the LA Times, of all places, that talks about how stats don't tell the story for a player like Perk.   I've been saying this since Perk's early years in the league.   If you discount Perk because of what you see on the stat sheet, you haven't really have no idea how he can change a game. This is a sentiment that Kevin Durant echoes in the article.
"If you didn't watch our games, you wouldn't know how important he is to our team," Durant says.
  The article talks about how you can measure just about anything using stats. Except the value of a player like Perk.
Yet, there's an outlier in Oklahoma City, a player with an impact as big as his towering stature but with a statistical footprint that's almost nonexistent.
Even if you watch, you have to pay attention, because while Perkins is easy to spot, the way he changes games isn't.
Each time an opposing big man is having an "off night," notice the defender hounding him on every shot and rebound.

Each time a Thunder player endures a hard foul, notice the refrigerator-sized teammate who levels the accused opponent.

And each time Durant, Russell Westbrook or James Harden curls around a screen and finds an acre of wide-open shooting space, notice the equilibrium-rattling pick that set him free.

Celtics Links for Today 9/21

Herald  Celtics announce surprise retirement of Keyon Dooling
Suns’ Channing Frye out with enlarged heart
Decades later, Brooklyn has its own pro team again
Globe  Celtics' Keyon Dooling decides to retire
Celtics sign Darko Milicic to one-year deal
Celtics Green  Pierce Comes In at #29 on ESPN Rankings
Remembering Red
Celtics Invite Micah Downs to Camp
Wow! This is a Shocker!
Random Thoughts on Darko and Dooling
Here's a Radical Idea


Pro Basketball Talk has a piece on the players in the league who can slow Dwight Howard down. 
Kendrick Perkins The first true Superman stopper (or slower downer?) has to be Kendrick Perkins. Having the size to match up with the mammoth is a huge advantage in slowing Dwight down, however, having that size alone doesn’t get the job done. Perkins is an exceptional defender especially against Dwight. He pushes Dwight away from the basket with his physical play and dares Dwight to beat him with his finesse offensive moves, or lack thereof. Having a defender like Perkins on Dwight allows everyone else to match up with their men without worrying about the help defense. Just hope that you don’t have to deal with foul trouble.
The key to Perk's defense on Howard is that he can do it with single coverage.  With Perk, the team doesn't need to double team Howard and that is huge when you have other shooters to guard like Kobe, Nash, Artest and Gasol.   They list only 3 players who have had success in slowing down Howard in the past and Perk is at the top.  With Howard's move to one of the Thunder's top rivals, Perk becomes even more important to the team this season. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Perk Photo of the Day

Thanks to The Basketball Jones for this great photo of Perk.   He definitely looks very wise and Beast-like  in this picture. 

New Graphics

My blog got a facelift  today thanks to Loy,  my partner in crime over on Celtics Green.  I did my best with my very limited graphics skills to put the other banner up, but now I have a header and background befitting a blog that is dedicated to Perk. He deserves the best!    So, a BIG thank you to Loy and now I'm ready for this season to begin!!!  Thunder UP!  (And Go Celtics!) 

Celtics Links for Today

Globe  Video: Rajon Rondo talks fashion on the Today Show
Celtics make Jay Larranaga hire official
Roster focus: Kris Joseph
Report: Celtics to sign Darko Milicic
Celtics Green  Hey Ray! KG Has a No Trade Clause and You Don't
The Legend Of Zang! And The Basketball Spinning Leprechaun
Player Profiles - Jason Terry
Darko to the Celtics

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Awesome Thunder Theme Song

Danny Miller on the piano with Crystal Place assisted living staff and residents with an awesome tribute song to the Thunder. It's sung to the Rawhide theme. But that's not the best part of this video. The absolute best part is the smiling Perk in the background holding 2 gallons of milk.   I WANT ONE!!!!

Brooks: Perk Gives Thunder an Edge

Scott Brooks was interviewed by the LA Times after his annual golf tournament that benefits his alma mater.  He answered questions on the Thunder and their competition this upcoming season.  He admits that the Thunder are one of the teams to beat in the West but wouldn't go as far as to say they are the favorites.   He also stressed that in order to win they have to stay healthy.

He expects Perk to come into camp 100% healthy after having groin and wrist surgeries this summer.   He also feels that Perk gives the Thunder an edge:
Perkins averages just 5.1 points and 6.6 rebounds per game, but Brooks sees value in his setting of screens, ruffling interior players and raising the team's toughness.
"He gives us an edge," Brooks said. "He hates his opponent. He's not happy unless he's unhappy. His teammates love him. He's always in a bad mood. I love guys who go out on the court and compete. He's not shaking hands and trying to be buddy buddy. He respects them, but he's going to try to beat them and then move on."
Perks value goes so far beyond the box score.  He may not score a lot of points, but his teammates score more points when he's on the court because he sets some of the best screens in the league.  He may not grab the most rebounds, but his teammates get more rebounds when he is on the court because he boxes out so well.  And his value as an enforcer and as one of the best interior defenders in the league can't be measured in anything other than wins.  And the Thunder have been winning a lot more since Perk came on board.

On Celtics Green, I wrote about Doc going Old School by making the Celtics hate the Heat.  Back in the old days,  rivals didn't shake hands.  They didn't hug after losses.  They respected each other (with the exception of Bill Laimbeer) and in some cases, as with Larry and Magic, they may have become friends off the court, but on the court they were enemies and there was no hugging or love lost once they hit that court.  Perk is old school.  As Scott said: "He's not shaking hands and trying to be buddy buddy."  On the court they are his enemies and he plays like it.  And, I love that about him.

Celtics Links for Today 9/19

Globe  Roster focus: Kevin Garnett
Celtics Green  Player Profiles - Keyon Dooling
Never Too Soon for the First Referee Rant of the Season
Random Thoughts 10 Days from Training Camp
Celtics Life  Former Celtics dominate Kentucky alumni game
Video: Rajon Rondo's Game Tying Alley Oop vs Heat
Celtic Nation  Pure Synergy
Mr. Potato Head
SQ12#50 Best Training Camp Battle

Monday, September 17, 2012

Celtics Links for Today 9/17

Herald  Russians prepare to invade Timberwolves
Matt Barnes joins Clippers with Blake Griffin’s approval
Oft-injured Mike Miller says he will be ready for Heat season
Celtics Green  Player Profiles -Jason Collins
Breakout ..... Team?
Psst! Hey You!? Wanna Write?
Celtics Life  Doc Rivers wants his players to "hate" the Heat
Fab Melo's "trimmed down tremendously"
Celtic Nation  Idiot Proof

You Gotta Love Perk

We've known for some time now that Perk isn't backing down from anyone, and that goes for the back up centers on his own team.  In an interview with NewsOK, he made it be known that the starting spot is his. 
As long as Perkins is physically capable, he's the starter, and he let that be known after a Thunder Fit clinic at Deer Creek Middle School last Wednesday.
“We're all teammates, but at the end of the day, the center position over here is mine and that's the way we're going to keep it,” said Perkins, wearing a brace on his left wrist. “Any other way, backup minutes or whatever they want to go about, that's their problem. Once I hit the court, I'm going to make it known — and it's going to be known — that that's mine.
“It's no beef, but at the end of the day, that's what it is.”
Now, if you were a center on the Thunder, would you want to take on Perk for that starting spot? I didn't think so. Some people discounted Perk after a substandard post season but when you figure that the guy was playing with a torn ligament in his wrist and a torn groin muscle, you have to say that Perk is an absolute beast. Most players would be on the sidelines with bandages and crutches and ice packs. But not Perk. He was out there battling for his team. He was step slow, but that was understandable, considering the injuries.

The groin is healed and the wrist is still not quite there but I expect Perk to be out there in training camp making good on that claim to the starting spot. The other OKC centers will be wisely competing for the back up spot.

Perk Not Worried About Dwight

Perk continues to make it known that he's not concerned about Dwight Howard's presence in the Western conference.
I just said it's time to go to work,” Thunder center Kendrick Perkins said about Howard joining the Lakers. “I knew the hype was going to be over there on that end and all that. But I'm glad the attention is off us because we're the type that likes to put our hard hats on and do stuff and keep it under the radar. And at the end of the day, when you look at the box score, Oklahoma won. That's the way we like to keep it.”
“We are the Western Conference champs,” Perkins said. “So at the end of the day, we're not chasing nobody except for the ring. We're chasing Miami to get a championship. It's no guarantee who is going to be where. But we earned the Western champs so we're not chasing the Lakers, we're chasing a championship and that's what it's about.”
I've seen people suggest that the Thunder should amnesty Perk to sign Harden. To me, this is ridiculous. True centers are hard to come by and true centers who defend like Perk does are even harder to find. The Celtics have been looking for one ever since they let Perk go. I'd love to have him back on the Celtics, believe me. But Perk's importance to the Thunder is greater than ever with the Lakers bringing in Howard with the express hope of getting past the Thunder. And why did they bring in Howard? Because Bynum couldn't get past Perk and they are hoping that Howard can.

But Perk has always been able to play Howard well with single coverage. He knows how to keep him out of his preferred spots to shoot. In my opinion, it's not Perk who should be worried about Dwight, but Dwight who should be worrying about Perk.
“I'm a guy that will speak and tell you that I got a chip on my shoulder where KD might not tell you that he has one on his shoulder but he really do,” Perkins said. “Trust me, we're ready to get at it.”
I love Perk!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Perk: We're Not Chasing Nobody Except For the Ring

I was very excited to see an interview with Perk posted on Twitter by Royce Young.

Good stuff! I love Perk! It's great to hear from the big guy! Here's a link to the interview if you want to listen to the whole thing. I love that he said that they're not chasing anyone but the ring!  He's definitely got a chip on his shoulder and is going to come back strong and better than ever. 

Celtics Links for Today 9/12

Herald  No SuperSonics, but Seattle plans for an NBA arena
G Elliott Williams will have Achilles surgery
Globe  Celtics roster focus: Brandon Bass
The ultimate Brian Scalabrine highlight video
Celtics Green  Titanic Division No More
Rondo Has Fun on BET's 106 & Park
Jason Terry Shares His Home and Excitement
Bill Russell on the Mend
Rondo Talks About His Asia Trip and Season Expectations

Perk's Ranking on ESPN Rankings

Perk was ranked #120 on ESPN's player rankings that they are posting for the top 500 players.   Last year he was ranked #95, so he's had a drop.  Personally I'd rank him a lot higher, but that's just me.  I do agree that he leads the league in scowls per minute, but that's just Perk! :)    

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Celtics Links for Today 9/9

Globe  Don Nelson one of 12 to enter Basketball Hall of Fame
Celtics Green  Celtics Retired Numbers Part 1
ESPN Player Rankings
Celtics Life  Video: 2011-'12 Celtics "All of the Lights" Mix
Lex Nihil Novi  The Cowens Mystique (Part V)
The Cowens Mystique (Part VI)
Celtic Nation  SQ12#40 Celtics’ Ownership: A Tale of Two Brown’s
Biggie Smalls
More Bounce to the Ounce
Dribble It Out

Rondo and Russ for GQ Fashion Week

We all remember the talk about Russell's shirts for his post game pressers back in the playoffs.  He was styling to his own drummer.  Here is a great picture of Rondo and Russ hanging out at Nordstrom's Treasure & Bond Store earlier this week as part of Fashion Week in New York City (photo by Paul Warner/Getty Images for GQ).  Looks like Russ is still styling to his own drummer. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Celtics Links for Today 9/8

Herald   12 in ’12: Reggie Miller, Don Nelson and 10 more enter hoops Hall
Source: Justin Timberlake joins bid to buy Grizzlies
Don Nelson finally gets his due in the Basketball Hall of Fame
Chet Walker is Hall of Fame ready
Celtics Green  It's All About the Character
Rajon Rondo, Pom-Pom Editor
Photos and Video of KG in China

Did the Refs Influence the Finals Outcome?

Just came across this video and wanted to share it here. It appears that Miami's title was preordained, whether by the league or by the refs. So many of those bad calls were made with the ref standing right there and watching it. They couldn't have missed them so they must have made them on purpose.

It is always so frustrating playing the Heat because you know the game is going to be called one sided. It may not have changed the outcome had the game been called fairly. But we won't ever know. But we do know that the outcome was influenced by the refs and so their championship will always have an asterisk in my mind.