Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge joined The Big Show for his weekly interview on Thursday afternoon. Ainge was first asked about the status of Shaquille O'Neal. Doc Rivers indicated earlier on Thursday that O'Neal's achilles injury could be a problem in the postseason.
"I was just with Shaq, we were just working out down in Waltham," said Ainge. "Shaq is either going to play Sunday or Tuesday. … I think that Doc probably -- "bleed into the playoffs" -- I think is something different than he's not going to play until the playoffs. But it looks like he's ready to go Sunday or Tuesday."
Jermaine O'Neal -- sidelined since January 12 after having arthroscopic surgery on his left knee -- is scheduled to make his return to the lineup Thursday vs. the Spurs. Ainge feels both O'Neal centers must be playing key minutes for the Celtics to make a run in the postseason.
"First of all, there's a couple of things," Ainge said. "With Shaq on the court this year, in the games he started for us, our offense and our defense has been better than it's been for four years. That tells you how important Shaq is, how important his presence is alone. Second of all, Jermaine has been -- in limited minutes -- he has been the best defensive center on our team this entire season. So that tells you a little bit about what they've been able to do in Jermaine's limited time and Shaq has played some significant minutes. That tells you all right there."
The Celtics have struggled mightily as of late, losing seven of its last 12 games. Ainge dismissed the notion that the slump is a result of the trade that sent Kendrick Perkins to Oklahoma State.
"There's been some discussion, I've been asked a lot about the emotional element of the team, Ainge said. "We won five in a row after the trade. There was no emotional element, the team was playing great. … I think our big four have all had a drop-off in the 12-game stretch. I don't know [why], it just happens. Rondo and KG have had the biggest significant drop, and Paul and Ray have stayed at a fairly high level but not as high as they did in the first 50 games. The only players playing better since the trade have been Kristic and Jeff Green.
"Our defense, from the time of the trade to the time before the trade, has not waned at all," continued Ainge. "Our defense numbers are almost identical. Our offense has gone from being the best field-goal percentage team in the league -- in a decade in the first 45 games of the year -- to being 20th in the league this year. To me, it's still KG hanse;t been talking as many shots. KG is not demanding the ball. And I know he's going to do that, I know he's going to do that more."
Chris Price and Mike Petraglia discuss the top priorities for the Patriots as the off-season begins. Who do they need to pursue in free agency, who do they need to keep, and what areas of the roster do they need to address?
Picard and Price give their predictions for SB50 later today.
Danny and Price react to the HOF class that was announced last night. They get into the names and legacies, especially a questionable one in Tony Dungy.
Boston Celtics stud Evan Turner joins the WEEI Celtics Podcast to reflect on the Celtics hot streak going into the All-Star break. Turner discussed how much he values being in a great situation in Boston and tries to get inside the life of Brad Stevens. First, Sam Packard and Jared Weiss chopped it up with Kyle Draper, covering the Celtics thrilling classic against Paul Pierce and the Los Angeles Clippers and broke down potential trade scenarios ahead of the deadline.
Trailing a big win by the Celtics over the Clippers, Paul Flannery of SB Nation calls in to talk everything Celtics.
Danny had just hit the air as it looked like the Celtics would drop a close game to the Cleveland Cavaliers, ride along as Danny goes on the emotional roller coaster of the final 7.5 seconds of the game
Jared Carrabis joins Mut Mutnansky to discuss concerns surrounding the Red Sox heading into Spring Training.
Red Sox reliever Matt Barnes joins Rob Bradford to discuss why he's now a relief pitcher, how important it is that he throws harder than most, lessons he learned from last season, and why his love for two very different restaurants in Cracker Barrel and Twin Peaks
This week the guys are joined by Ian Browne of MLB.com, they talk about Clay Buchholz and the impending opening of spring training
Ken Laird and DJ Bean discuss Boston's 6-2 in Winnipeg on Thursday night, an answer night after losing 9-2 at home to LA on Tuesday
Ken Laird & DJ Bean discuss the LA Kings 9-2 win at TD Garden on Tuesday as former Bruin Milan Lucic was one of 9 different players to score during a 57-shot night for the Kings
DJ, Pete and Ken continue their discussion about the direction of the Bruins and how some of their moves are ambiguous and tough to figure out their thinking. Are they going for it all or rebuilding. Again, DJ appropriately calls it a "soft rebuild." They talk about acquiring Beleskey as well as Brett Connolly's recent play. Also, the boys talked with Arpon Basu about the spiraling Montreal Canadiens.
Robert Kraft on WCVB.
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
The top stories of the day as recounted by Minihane.
A caller to Mike Francesca duped The Pope into thinking that Oscar Robinson was #29 on the list (he was actually #11) which prompted Mike to go insane.
Patriot fans, as expected, begin to connect the dots in hopes of bringing the talented RB to Foxboro.
Lou did the crossover at 9:55 on Friday, which led to a fiery exchange between himself and Kirk Minihane. Lou tells the story and opines on the situation.
Dale, Michael and Jerry check in with our good friend John Buccigross and talk some NHL hockey.
Dale, Michael and Jerry open up the floodgates on a freestyle friday and talk about whatever you want.
Dale, Michael and Jerry discuss how good a fit former Bear Matt Forte would be in this Patriots offense.
Mikey, Mut, Lenny, and Lucy are talking Patriots, Red Sox, Presidents and a whole lot more.
Mikey and Mut are talking about free agent running back Matt Forte, and whether he would be a good fit for the Patriots.
Jared Carrabis joins Mut Mutnansky to discuss concerns surrounding the Red Sox heading into Spring Training
Kate Scott, of KNBR in San Francisco, joins Lucy to discuss women in sports radio, the Super Bowl, and how great it is to talk about sports for a living.