Boston Celtics: Hot Button

Hot Button: Love affair

May, 22, 2014
5/22/14
4:15
PM ET
This week's ESPN Boston Hot Button focuses on whether the Celtics should sacrifice a Kevin Garnett-like package of draft picks and talent in the pursuit of Minnesota's Kevin Love:

http://espn.go.com/boston/hot/?id=10970414

[Read and vote in the Hot Button]

Hot Button: KG's future

February, 18, 2013
2/18/13
3:45
PM ET
As Kevin Garnett's name swirls in trade rumors, our Hot Button ponders whether the team has to listen to trade offers for those that desire his service:

http://espn.go.com/boston/

Hot Button: On his shoulders?

May, 25, 2012
5/25/12
3:50
PM ET
Who will be the Game 7 hero if Boston is to prevail over the Philadelphia 76ers?

http://espn.go.com/boston/

Hot Button: C's a threat to Bulls?

April, 5, 2012
4/05/12
10:00
AM ET
Should the resurgent Boston Celtics be considered a threat to the Chicago Bulls in the Eastern Conference? We teamed up with our friends at ESPN Chicago to find out:

http://espn.go.com/chicago/index?topId=7775967

Hot Button: Deal or no deal?

March, 13, 2012
3/13/12
4:30
PM ET
In the latest ESPN Boston Hot Button, Peter May (deal!) and Chris Forsberg (no deal!) debate whether the Boston Celtics need to make a big move before Thursday's trade deadline:

http://espn.go.com/boston/?topId=7681459

Hot Button: Who's playing better ball?

March, 3, 2012
3/03/12
7:00
PM ET
BOSTON -- As the Celtics and Knicks prepare for an Atlantic Division showdown Sunday at TD Garden, we debate which of the two teams is playing the best basketball at the moment:

http://espn.go.com/boston/?topId=7638228

Hot Button: Trade Rondo?

March, 2, 2012
3/02/12
7:00
AM ET
David Richard/US PresswireShould the C's consider dealing Rajon Rondo?
In this week's ESPN Boston Hot Button, Chris Forsberg and Peter May debate whether the Celtics should truly consider trading Rajon Rondo. A sample of the arguments:

FORSBERG: C'S BEST BEST IS KEEPING RONDO  
Here's this argument in a nutshell. When the Celtics ponder the idea of trading Rondo -- or any other player in their origination -- it comes down to the simple question of, "Does that move make Boston better?" In the case of Rondo, very few players return a "yes" response, and most of them aren't available to the Celtics. Does Rondo come with his own set of headaches? Of course, but what superstar doesn't have their idiosyncrasies? Rondo can be temperamental, but when he's engaged, few point guards are better. The Celtics simply have to hope his inconsistencies and immaturities will fade with time, and the 26-year-old has made strides this year in trying to improve in those areas.
 

MAY: CELTICS SHOULD MOVE ON FROM RONDO  
I believe I am on the record as saying the Celtics should trade Rajon Rondo for Chris Paul. And for Deron Williams (who still is out there). There are a handful of point guards in the league for whom I'd trade Rondo: Paul, Williams, Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook, Jeremy Lin. (OK, just threw that last one in there.) The Celtics didn't get Paul. They didn't get Westbrook (although apparently they tried). They're not getting Rose. So yes, they should trade Rondo.

Hot Button: At a crossroads

May, 12, 2011
5/12/11
4:00
PM ET
The Celtics want to keep their core intact. But is that the best decision moving forward? On the heels of a second-round exit at the hands of the Miami Heat, should Boston stick with its core or blow it up? Vote in this week's ESPN Boston Hot Button poll:



Hot Button: Flipping switches

April, 14, 2011
4/14/11
6:17
PM ET
AP Photo/Elise AmendolaCan Kevin Garnett and the Boston Celtics flip a switch again this postseason?
In the latest Hot Button poll, we debate whether the Celtics can "flip the switch" for a second straight season. Here's a glimpse at the arguments:

--FORSBERG: REST, PRACTICES WILL AID SLUMPING C'S--
For the second straight season, the Boston Celtics have offered no reason to believe they are fit for a run at a world title with their uninspired late-season play. And while even coach Doc Rivers has admitted that this year's team doesn't have the flip-the-switch potential of last year's squad that surged within six minutes of Banner 18, you simply can't write off the 2010-11 Celtics before the postseason even begins. Why should anyone be confident the Celtics can actually pull off a repeat of last season? Here's a handful of reasons: No back-to-backs, more practice time, more game-planning, and veteran experience.

--MAY: ALL SIGNS POINT TO A POWER FAILURE FOR BOSTON--
Flip the switch? How about pull the switch? We're about to begin the 2011 playoffs and the Boston Celtics, once again, have cratered in the second half of the season to go from conference favorite to utterly unpredictable wild card. Last year, they rose up as one and smote the rest of the Eastern Conference infidels en route to the Finals. No one expected it then. How can anyone be expecting it now?

Click HERE to vote in the Hot Button poll.

Hot Button: Who wants it more?

April, 7, 2011
4/07/11
12:11
PM ET
AP Photo/Getty ImagesOld friend Tom Thibodeau has Doc Rivers and the Celtics chasing his Bulls.
The Celtics visit the Bulls in a battle between the top two teams in the East. In this week's Hot Button poll, we ask which contender has more at stake on Thursday?

--FORSBERG: CELTICS CAN'T LET 2-SEED SLIP AWAY--
And don't discount Boston's desire to win the season series. The Celtics wouldn't mind atoning for a putrid effort on the second night of a back-to-back in Chicago in January. Seeing old friends like Tom Thibodeau and Brian Scalabrine always provides a little motivation -- just as seeing Joakim Noah ought to give Kevin Garnett a spark and Rajon Rondo will be a little extra amped to match up with Derrick Rose.

--GREENBERG: BULLS NEED WIN FOR PLAYOFF MOMENTUM--
It sounds like coachspeak when Derrick Rose talks about a 97-94 win over Phoenix like a loss, but he isn't humble in the way some might think. Rose is cold-blooded when it comes to basketball and he's thinking about a championship and what it takes to get there. He can see the slippage on defense lately, the blips in intensity.

Click HERE to vote in this week's Hot Button.



Hot Button: Who gets the top seed?

March, 22, 2011
3/22/11
7:09
PM ET
Steve Babineau/Getty ImagesQuick huddle up: Who's going to emerge as the No. 1 seed in the East?
Which team has the best chance of capturing the top seed in the East? ESPN Boston and ESPN Chicago made the argument for each city, now you be the judge in this week's Hot Button poll. Check out a sampling of the arguments for both sides below:

--FRIEDELL: BULLS' YOUTH AND DESIRE WILL WIN TOP SEED--
The Chicago Bulls have the inside track on the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs because of their youth. Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers has already said he won't push his veterans over their minutes limit down the stretch in the regular season just to pick up a better seed.


--FORSBERG: C'S WON'T LET HOME COURT SLIP AWAY THIS TIME--
From the very moment the Boston Celtics walked off the confetti-strewn court at the Staples Center, where the rival Los Angeles Lakers were celebrating a second consecutive world title last June, coach Doc Rivers and his charges told anyone that would listen how different the ending would have been had Game 7 of the NBA Finals been played in Boston.

Click HERE to vote in this week's Hot Button poll.

Hot Button: What's wrong with Rondo?

March, 16, 2011
3/16/11
2:30
PM ET
AP Photo/Matt SlocumIs Rajon Rondo bothered by an injury, or is he simply struggling late in the season?
What's wrong with Rajon Rondo? Our experts try to diagnose the Celts spark plug's recent struggles in this week's ESPN Boston Hot Button topic. Here's a glimpse at the arguments:

--MAY: SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT WITH RONDO--
Rondo's health is what matters here and if it means shutting him down for a while, by all means, do it. The Celtics have better replacements for Rondo now than they did in November and December, when he missed 11 games with hamstring and ankle injuries. Back then, it was basically Nate Robinson running the show and the Celtics went 7-4 in the games Rondo missed. Now, they have Carlos Arroyo, who already has shown an impressive aptitude for running the team, and the returning Delonte West, assuming he can play with some degree of caution. That's not Rondo, but it's not a bad 1-2 punch off the bench.


--FORSBERG: NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT WITH RONDO--
The conspiracy theories are a lot more intriguing, but alas, the reason behind Rajon Rondo's recent struggles is really quite boring: Rondo and the Celtics are displaying typical March sputters and the team's inability to win games during this stretch have highlighted his trials. Let's start with the facts: For the month of March, Rondo is averaging 8.1 points and 9.3 assists per game (not too shabby, but modest by his lofty standards). Compared to his February numbers, Rondo is down 4.2 points and 1.2 assists per contest. That's troubling, there's no doubt. But go back and look at the trends from the past two seasons. It's almost par for the course.

Click HERE to vote in this week's Hot Button.

Hot Button: Title hopes for B's or C's?

March, 4, 2011
3/04/11
2:15
PM ET
Jim Rogash/Getty ImagesWhich of Boston's winter teams has a better shot at a title?
The Bruins and Celtics both have legitimate title hopes. But which one is more likely to parade through Boston in June? ESPNBoston.com's Bruins writer James Murphy and I debate in this week's Hot Button topic. Here's a sample of the arguments:

--FORSBERG: HISTORY ON CELTICS' SIDE IN THIS ARGUMENT--
It's cute how Bruins fans get all giddy about their Stanley Cup chances around this time each year (I picture Blades the Bear coming out of his cave and looking for his shadow, like some oversized groundhog predicting future on-ice success). I'd love to share in that excitement, except that I was eight years away from being born the last time the Bruins sent a banner to the rafters, so color me skeptical. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to see Boston's hockey team win it all (at least once in my lifetime). But if we're trying to figure out which of the Garden's tenants will win it all this year, odds say it'll be the team that's produced six world championships since the Bruins' last drink from the Cup in 1972.

--MURPHY: CHIARELLI HAS BRUINS CLOSER TO A TITLE--
The Boston Bruins have a better chance of finishing this season with a title than the Celtics because their general manager decided at the recent NHL trade deadline that winning now is more important than building for the future. Of course, Peter Chiarelli had a solid young nucleus in place already with the likes of Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, Brad Marchand, Tyler Seguin and Tuukka Rask, but he saw the team's window for a Stanley Cup closing and decided to go for it.

Hop HERE to vote in this week's Hot Button topic.

Hot Button: Taking sides on C's trade

February, 25, 2011
2/25/11
3:45
PM ET
Is the Kendrick Perkins trade a dangerous chemistry experiment or does it make the Celtics a more dangerous team? Read our arguments and decide for yourself:

--FORSBERG: THIS CHEMISTRY EXPERIMENT NOT WORTH THE GAMBLE
Celtics coach Doc Rivers spent an entire summer telling us how Boston had never been defeated in a playoff series with its starting five intact. After Thursday's deadline shocker that sent starting center Kendrick Perkins to Oklahoma City, Rivers admitted we'll never know for sure what Boston's familiar five could have accomplished had they remained healthy this season.

But one thing is certain: As the dust settles following the trade deadline, the Boston Celtics are a weaker team than they were the day before because part of their nucleus has been pried away.

--MAY: CELTICS MORE TALENTED, VERSATILE AFTER THE DEAL
Examining the Celtics-Thunder trade on its merits, I think Danny Ainge has once again come out on top. Let's begin with the article of faith that the team that gets the best player usually makes out the best in the trade. Jeff Green is the best player among the four. I can't imagine any GM disputing that. Green is 24 years old. He was averaging 15.2 points a game, third on the Thunder behind Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

What's your take? Click HERE to vote in the Hot Button poll.

Hot Button: Rondo vs. Rose

February, 15, 2011
2/15/11
9:00
AM ET
Steve Babineau/NBAE/Getty ImagesDerrick Rose vs. Rajon Rondo: Who's the best PG in the East?
With the 2011 NBA All-Star game right around the corner, ESPN Boston debuts the Hot Button feature this week by posing the question: Who's the best point guard in the East, Rajon Rondo or Derrick Rose?

ESPN Chicago's Nick Friedell offers the defense of Rose (no one has done more with less this season), while I offer the Rondo argument (the player who most consistently guides his team to victory). Check out the full debate, vote, and offer your own take in the discussion.

Click HERE to participate in the Hot Button poll.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Jared Sullinger
PTS AST STL MIN
14.1 2.2 0.7 28.8
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Sullinger 8.1
AssistsE. Turner 4.4
StealsM. Smart 1.1
BlocksK. Olynyk 0.7