The first day of training camp on Saturday marked Jeff Green's official return to basketball in a Celtics uniform.
"I’ve gone through the tough times," said Green, whose aortic aneurysm was discovered during C's training camp a year ago. "I’ve beat it, and now I’m in great condition. My game is getting right, and I’m just happy to play basketball."
Green hadn't suited up in green since Game 5 of the 2011 Eastern Conference semifinals against the Heat.
"I was trying not to smile too much during practice," he said. "I had to keep a straight face. It’s hard. I let some emotions go, telling all the players that I’m happy to back, encouraging them, just talking a lot for no reason, because I was glad to be back on the floor."
Despite undergoing season-ending heart surgery in January and being subsequently released by the Celtics, making the 6-foot-9 forward an unrestricted free agent this summer, Green remained around the team during their run to the Eastern Conference finals.
"That meant a lot," said Celtics coach Doc Rivers. "No. 1, he wanted to be here. He had some suitors, and he really didn’t listen to any of them. I know it, because his agent is my son’s agent [David Falk], so it never failed: When I was talking about Austin [Rivers], somehow we got back on Jeff. And I thought he was frustrated at times, because Jeff didn’t want to hear anybody else’s offer."
Still, that didn't prevent the Celtics from rewarding the 26-year-old Green with a four-year, $36 million contract.
"I wanted to come back," said Green. "I wanted to be a part of this organization and play with these players, so that’s why you saw me around and being a part of the team as much as I could be."
After the Celtics acquired him in the deal that sent Kendrick Perkins to the Thunder in February 2011, Green averaged just 9.8 points and 3.3 rebounds in 26 regular-season games for the C's, so Saturday marked the start of his first training camp in Waltham.
"I think he’s very comfortable here," said Rivers. "I think he really wants to play well here. He feels like the first time he was here, that was not the Jeff Green that he knows that he is. So, he just wants to be better, and he wants to really help this franchise."
For more on the Celtics, visit weei.com/celtics.
The guys have even more reaction to Deflategate and if this is actually a showdown between Bill and Roger.
Tom E. Curran calls the boys during his layover in Denver and gets right into the Deflategate craziness. Tom talks about his knowledge of the situation including his thoughts on if the NFL was indeed trying to set up and catch the Pats in the act. He gets into the relationship between Belichick and the league office, Belichick and Kraft and the actual game on Super Bowl Sunday.
Greg and Steve discuss the Deflategate debacle with callers and give their theories as to what went down in Foxboro last week against the Colts. Both guys think that Pats may be guilty of doing something to the balls, but that so do most other teams. Will Belichick and Brady be punished? Not if the NFL doesn't have proof, which it's looking more and more like they don't.
Ben and Sam discuss ways to improve the NBA All-Star weekend, hand out of hardware, and give their Finals predictions
Jackie MacMullen, ESPN Boston, talks with MFB about Rondo being traded to the Dallas Mavericks, and how this will have an effect on the Celtics rebuild process
How have the Celtics looked after a couple weeks? Could they be a playoff team? These questions and more...
The Red Sox have taken over Foxwoods and Red Sox Manager John Farrell sat down with Mut and Bradford to talk about the roster and how the 2015 season is looking.
Red Sox pitcher Joe Kelly and 3B Pablo Sandoval sat down with Mut and Bradford. Joe Kelly had a few interesting proclamations. First he said that 95% of pitchers use some sort of grip enhancer, and then he said he was going to win the Cy Young. Pablo leaned over and promised 10 HR's, explaining to Joe that the trick is to set the bar low.
Mut and Rob are in on the Hot Stove Show this week and they're taking calls and talking about the Red Sox pitching as we are 5 weeks away from pitchers and catchers reporting to spring training.
Pierre McGuire talks about ways hockey players skirt the rules in the NHL and the development of Dougie Hamilton.
Pierre McGuire joins Lou, Christian and Tim to discuss the resurgent Bruins, the emergence of David Pastrnak, and former Boston College stand-out Johnny Gaudreau looking to trademark the name 'Johnny Hockey.'
We get our state of the B report from NESN's Jack Edwards, right in the midst of a 4 game winning streak and hot return for David Pastrnak.
Tim Hasselbeck joined the show to give his expertise on deflate gate.
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
The guys opened the show discussing who was lying yesterday.
The guys react to comments made by Former Carolina Panthers General Manager Marty Hurney
After Tom Brady answered questions for a half hour about Deflate-Gate, the guys discuss whether or not they believe him.
Adam Schefter, ESPN, talks everything Deflate Gate with Lou, Christian and Tim on Patriots Friday
We get the national perspective on Deflategate and the Patriots-Seahawks Super Bowl with the playmaker, Hall of Famer Michael Irvin.
We discuss deflategate and move beyond it for some game talk with Tom E Curran of CSNNE
Michael, Jerry and Andy Hart of PFW continue the dialogue and try and find some sanity in this sea of madness.
A caller named Jumbo from California raises a question that hasn't been talked about too much, what happens if it's determined that the Patriots aren't found responsible for the deflation of the footballs?
Mut and Lenny continue talking and taking calls on deflategate, as well as hearing the sound from Kirk Minihane's appearance on the O'Reilly Factor.
Mut and Lenny are talking deflategate and what impact it could have on the Patriots organization.
Chris and comedian Mike Mulloy recap the final Raw before the Rumble and preview the Rumble itself.
Would you rather watch important games in the stadium or on TV? Also we discuss our worst experiences at stadiums.
Ben and Sam discuss ways to improve the NBA All-Star weekend, hand out some hardware, and give their Finals predictions.
We get the national perspective on Deflategate and the Patriots-Seahawks Super Bowl with the playmaker, Hall of Famer Michael Irvin.More from this show
Tim Hasselbeck joined the show to give his expertise on deflate gate.More from this show
After his emotional reaction on NFL Live following Tom Brady's press conference yesterday, Mark Brunell joins Lou, Christian and Tim about all things Deflate GateMore from this show
The guys react to comments made by Former Carolina Panthers General Manager Marty HurneyMore from this show