Celtics guard Avery Bradley, in an interview with the Mut & Merloni show following his first game of the 2012-13 season, said that he returned from his two shoulder surgeries about a month ahead of his anticipated schedule, and that he feels as if he's ready to play 30-35 minutes a night already.
"I’m in great shape right now," said Bradley. "However many minutes I play, I’m going to go out there and play as hard as I can. I feel like everything will work itself out if I continue to play as hard as I am. I’ll continue to come along on the offensive end and I’ll be able to play even harder on the defensive end."
Bradley noted that he is driven to sustain his reputation as one of the top on-the-ball defenders in the NBA.
"It’s just motivation for me," Bradley said of such accolades. "It makes me want to continue to work hard. When people talk about me like that, I want to prove to people that it’s true every night I step on the floor. I’m going to show that I’m a great defender and make it as hard as possible for my opponent.
"Like I tell everybody, I don’t feel like you can have an off defensive game. It’s all effort and heart. I just go out there, on the defensive end, play as hard as I can," he continued. "Every night, you’re not going to have a good offensive game. But if you go out there and give effort on the defensive end, that’s all your coach wants and all your teammates can ask for, and that’s what I try to do every night."
That reputation, in turn, has made Bradley one of the most prominent trade chips on the Celtics roster. As a young player who can impact a game, his name will likely be mentioned in connection with numerous trade rumors as the NBA trading deadline starts to come into view.
Bradley said that he's now accustomed to being a part of that rumor mill, and so he's also become proficient at ignoring it.
"Since my rookie year, it’s been happening, so I know it’s always going to happen," said Bradley. "Every year, your name could be in trade talks. You’ve just got to focus on the games that are coming up and not think about the trade deadline and all those things."
Bradley suggested that he's focused on the business of helping the Celtics recover from their slow start. While he and the team did not want to stumble out of the gates again while relying on the recent history of last year's recovery from similarly poor play early in the season, he acknowledged that there is solace to be taken in that recent turnaround.
"Coming into this year, we didn’t want to think like that. We didn’t want to be the same as last year," said Bradley. "But it looks like that’s how it could be. I definitely feel like we’re going to flip the switch. Going into the second half of this season, I feel like we’re gong to pick it up and start playing Celtic basketball."
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Ryan Hannable previews Super Bowl XLIX between the Patriots and Seahawks.
The voice of the Super Bowl Kevin Harlan joins the show to preview the Super Bowl and talk about some the Patriots games he has called.
Tom E Curran joins the show on Radio Row to preview the Super Bowl and talk about the fraud Roger Goodell.
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.
Wrapping up the show's week on radio row.
Show favorite Mad Dog Russo joins the guys to look at Sunday's game and the response he has seen to deflategate.
Kravitz calls in to put a wrap on the deflategate this week's coverage. He details some of the twitter attacks he has received from Patriots fans.
Christian ran around Radio Row getting predictions form anyone he could find, which included being Green-Flied by Warren Sapp
Local Wiseguy Louie Merloni gives us the lines for Super Bowl XLIX
Adam Schefter, ESPN, joins Lou, Christian and Tim to talk about all the news surrounding Super Bowl XLIX
We help you gamblers out there by breaking down some Super Bowl Prop Bets.
Kevin Harlan talks about some of his famous calls from Patriots games and previews the Super Bowl live from Radio Row.
Tom E Curran joins the show on Radio Row to preview the Super Bowl and give his prediction for the big game.
Mikey and Mut are gearing up for the Super Bowl on the final show before the Patriots take on the Seahawks.
DeOssie joins Mut from Arizona to talk about how big the hype has been for this year's Super Bowl in comparison to other Super Bowl games in the past and how Seattle's defense matches up against New England's offense.
Jim and Pete talk about the final football game of the 2014 season. It's the Patriots and the Seahawks, and there's still fantasy football to be played!
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.
Old friend Boomer Esiason drops by to give his take on the big game. Boomer thinks the Patriots will prevail in the desert.More from this show