After grabbing the backup center job with a strong second half of the season, Greg Stiemsma has been losing some minutes to Ryan Hollins in Doc Rivers' rotation. Hollins has played 41 minutes the last four games after not playing at all in Game 1 and saw the court for 19 minutes in Game 5 to Stiemsma's four.
"The other guy is playing better," Rivers said meaning Hollins. "It’s a competition, always, and Ryan is playing terrific for us. Ryan’s minutes on the floor with Kevin [Garnett] are unbelievable. When you put him and Kevin on the floor together that’s our best defensive team."
The numbers back up Rivers' assertion. In 16 defensive possessions with Garnett and Hollins in the frontcourt, the Celtics have given up just 11 points and scored twenty five.
Rivers also said that he thought about making a lineup shift to take Avery Bradley off Joe Johnson, but ultimately decided to keep things as they are...
Doc Rivers confirmed that Paul Pierce will play in Game 6 Thursday night as the Celtics try to close out the Hawks in their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series. But the coach expressed concern that Pierce is not 100 percent after being diagnosed with an MCL sprain of his left following an injury last Sunday.
"It's not the best situation, but he's going to play," Rivers said of Pierce, who scored 16 points in 36 minutes. "We just have to see what he can do on the floor."
Pierce was clearly limited defensively in the second half as Josh Smith, Marvin Williams and Al Horford all helped the Hawks build a 12-point lead, then built a nine-point lead before another Celtics rally fell short.
Pierce injured the left knee when he stepped on a teammate's foot in shootaround on Sunday morning before Game 4. He aggravated it in the second quarter when he collided with Josh Smith, who was setting a screen.
The Patriots announced Thursday position responsibilities for six members on the current coaching staff. Matt Patricia has been named defensive coordinator, Josh Boyer will coach cornerbacks, Brian Flores will coach safeties, Patrick Graham will coach the defensive line and Pepper Johnson will coach the linebackers. On offense, George Godsey will coach the tight ends. In addition, Joe Judge has been named special teams assistant and Steve Belichick, son of the head coach, has been named a coaching assistant. For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
Danny Ainge made his weekly appearance on The Big Show on Thursday afternoon, just hours before the Celtics and Hawks play Game 6 of their first-round series at TD Garden. Ainge was first asked about Game 5, an 87-86 Hawks win that saw the Celtics fail to execute offensively down the stretch.
"We didn't play well, I didn't think," said Ainge. "We had good spurts to get back in the game. It probably wasn't a game we deserved, although we had chances."
As for Game 6, Ainge expects the most intense game of the series to date from both Atlanta and Boston.
"I think both teams view this as a must win," Ainge said. "You have to. Obviously you have another shot at it in Game 7, but I think our guys will approach this game tonight, and Doc will coach it, like it's the end of the season type of game, elimination game. And that's how they'll coach it and play it."
Hawks co-owner Michael...
The Patriots announced Thursday that they have signed free-agent running back Joseph Addai, as well as seven rookie free agents: running back Brandon Bolden (Mississippi), defensive lineman Marcus Forston (Miami), defensive lineman Justin Francis (Rutgers), tight end Brad Herman (Iowa), wide receiver Matt Roark (Kentucky), offensive lineman Jeremiah Warren (South Florida) and offensive lineman Markus Zusevics (Iowa). The rookies will join the seven players drafted by the Patriots in 2012 at a rookie minicamp at Gillette Stadium that begins Friday. For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
Pete, Thornton and Price give their final thoughts and predictions for the Super Bowl.
Gabe calls the boys to handicap one of the biggest gambling days of the year - Super Bowl 51! Gabe has all the point spread info down and gets to all of the major prop bets that interest him.
Fauria is still down in Houston and calls live from NRG Stadium to give his take on what will go down later on in Super Bowl 51. He likes the Pats and gives his reasons why, but also gets into the scene in Houston all week, famous people he met and why he is tired out from a wild week.
The NBA trade rumor mill is beginning to swirl as the deadline approaches and Picard is ready to go! He talks about the possibility of Jimmy Butler coming to Boston, why Isaiah Thomas is not getting enough respect and the future of the Celtics.
Adrian Wojnarowski has been talking about the possibility of the Celtics making a trade with the Bulls to bring Jimmy Butler to Boston. He actually thinks it may be the the marquee deal to keep an eye on this week heading into the trade deadline. Pete and Jerry discuss and give their thoughts on if they would want Butler. Pete thinks it will happen, Jerry thinks Ainge will stay put. The guys get into more Celtics, present and future and if they can battle with the best of the NBA.
Anna Horford, sister of Boston Celtics Al Horford, makes her Boston radio debut. She talks about Twitter and reacting to mean tweets about her brother. She also gives us her thoughts on the city of Boston and racism.
Bradford checks in from spring training to give us all the media dirt he can dig up...oh, and talk some baseball too.
Pete, Bradford, and Tomase are talking all about the Boston Red Sox, who opened spring training on Monday with pitchers and catchers reporting. They talk about what the Red Sox approach at the plate will be to replace the loss of David Ortiz bat, the impact of some players participating in the WBC, and of course the pitching rotation.
Guys talk the Bruins season so far and the All-Star Break
Guys discuss if or when the Bruins will fire Coach Julian
Ken, Rear and Ty get into a very solid week for the B's beating St Louis and the Flyers and losing a hard-fought game against the Predators. Is this team turning things around? Krug and Marchand are kicking things up a notch. The guys also talk about Claude and Sweeney's job security before getting into some big hits around the league this week.
Hour 4. Gerry went for a walk and discovered a nude beach.
Hour 3. Gerry went for a jog and dipped his clothes in the pool. Trenni didn't want to report on Swihart's throwing problems.
Hour 2. Shaughnessy writes that the 2004 Red Sox is a better story than the Patriots. Headlines with Kirk.
A. Sherrod Blakely joins Pete Sheppard and Andy Hart to talk about the Jimmy Butler to Boston rumors and the deal to send DeMarcus Cousins to the Pelicans.
Pete and Andy fill in for Glenn, Lou and Christian. The guys talk Patriots and try to figure out where Jimmy G will play next year, and what the Patriots will get for him.
Pete Sheppard and Andy Hart fill in for OMF and talk about last night's joke of an All Star Game, the rumors about Jimmy Butler to the Celtics and DeMarcus Cousins getting traded to New Orleans.
An epic battle royale between Holley and Keefe, who are completely on the opposite side of the fence concerning Demarcus Cousins. These guys have never agreed on this player, and today after the trade they finally had it out.
Dale, Michael and Rich Keefe discuss the trade that sent DeMarcus Cousins to New Orleans, and why with such a low price were the Celtics not in on him? They take your reactions, plus, where do the Celtics go to get better from here?
Dale, Michael and Keefe discuss the new details of how the NY Jets tampered with Darrelle Revis while he was still under contract with the Patriots, and why the NFL didn't punish them further.
Kirk sits down with the legend Glenn Ordway to talk about when Glenn got fired here at WEEI, his start with the station, the controversial decisions he made when he was the Program Director, and he relationship with Eddie Andelman.
Kirk chats with David Duchovny about his current music tour, which takes him to the Wilbur on February 22nd, how David got his start in television, from his first stint on Red Shoe Diaries, becoming a superstar on the X-Files, and his hilarious appearances on the Larry Sanders Show. This is a fascinating discussion about show business and controlling your own career.
Kirk Minihane sits down with Michael Holley for the first time on the podcast. Kirk and Michael have hosted shows together in the past but have never had a candid conversation about WEEI. Kirk and Michael talk about Holley's career in radio, his best selling books, and what his assessment of the current WEEI is. There are a lot of interesting behind the scene nuggets for anybody who has listened to WEEI over the years. This episode is brought to you by hellofresh.com. For Enough About Me listeners go to hellofresh.com and use the promo code kirk35 for $35 off your first week of deliveries.
On this weeks episode of the WEEI SoccerCast Ben, Russ, and Alex talk about the demolition of Barcelona and Arsenal, if the Gunners should fire Wenger, and if the Revs made a good trade?
Ken Laird and Chris Curtis wrap up the week with a review of Thursday and Friday's K&C shows.
Hour 4. Gerry went for a walk and discovered a nude beach.More from this show