Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

January 27, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Chris Forsberg

Chris Forsberg
  (11:43 AM)

Hey everybody! Probably going to start a little late. Let's figure on a 12:30 tip-off. Go ahead and submit your questions now and I'll dive in as soon as possible. Thanks for hanging out!

Chris Forsberg
  (12:30 PM)

Hey everybody! Thanks for enduring our little delay of game. We'll get started momentarily.

Frank (New Orleans)

What does a win like last night's do for the Celtics?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:33 PM)

I think it reminds them throughout the season that they're never out of a game. And maybe it serves as a bit of a microcosm of their season. Yes, the Celtics have dug themselves a bit of a hole with a slow start, but if they get back to being the defense-first team we all know, they can hang with anyone. It's definitely an inspiring win, but only if they build off of it moving forward.

Angela (Galveston)

Are the Celtics beginning to reap the benefits of Bradley becoming a effective defender?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:35 PM)

One of the things we tackled in today's <a href="" target="new">3-on-3</a> is whether there's room for in the rotation for Bradley, , and E'Twaun Moore Keyon Dooling (a trio of combo guards, all better suited for the 2 than the 1, but all capable of being contributors). I think Dooling's spot is secure because he's a proven veteran, but the hard part is that the younger guys need minutes to continue to develop and I think Rivers will have to ride whoever is playing better ball that night. But there's definitely reason to be encouraged by both Bradley and Moore, and their recent play.

Evan (Auburn, Ala.)

How impressed have you been with E'Twaun Moore's performances, and why haven't we seen much of JaJuan Johnson? I feel like he could be helpful in giving the bigger guys some rest.

Chris Forsberg
  (12:39 PM)

It really did feel like all Moore needed was a couple shots to fall and he was going to take off. We still need to see it on a consistent basis, but here's what I like most about his recent play -- he doesn't turn the ball over and doesn't look overwhelmed while running the offense. When he's shooting like last night, he can be real asset for this team. As for Johnson, we noted it in this week's mailbag and again in the quarterly report, but I think he just needs to get stronger. His athleticism is impressive and he's working hard.

Avery B (Boston (MA))

Is there a way that I can just play defense and Moore can play offense for me? Can we start subbing on the run at half court?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:41 PM)

Doc actually joked about that recently, too. If you could mash the two together, it would be a very impressive young player. Unless the NBA institutes hockey-like lines changes on the fly, I think you just hold out hope they both continue to develop and become more complete players.

Jim (NH)

Big Win or Big loss by the Magic? Impressive back to back wins, is it time to get on the bandwagon?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:42 PM)

Well, the Magic certainly didn't aid their own cause and you could practically hear Celtics fans screaming at the TV for Glen Davis to keep shooting, but I think any team that comes back from a 27-point hole deserves most of the credit. That defense was outstanding for Boston and seeing guys like Moore step up on offense was fun to watch.

mike (MA)

so has anyone ask you yet if this team is better without RAY? what do you think about that, the defense has improved so much, back to beast mode! how can we keep it up when he comes back?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:45 PM)

Yeah, I've heard that notion. Look, Allen's certainly not an elite defender, but the tradeoff is he's truly an elite offensive player. The points he generates more than makes up for what he gives up. And, let's face it, anyone out there playing with the likes of KG, Rondo, and Piece are going to be just fine defensively. I keep waiting for someone to suggest Bradley or Moore should start over Rondo now.

Larry (Leominster, MA)

When it comes down to the stretch run of the season, what is the rotation of players that will actually see the court?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:47 PM)

If healthy, you got the starting 5 with Pietrus and Bass heavy off the bench. I think Dooling will be the backup 1 at that point because of his experience. And you have to hope that Wilcox is in the rotation at that point (his effort last night was encouraging). I think it'll be tough for the younger guys to have consistent roles, but Bradley could always be a defensive spark type of guy. The interesting one to me is whether Marquis Daniels is a heavy rotation guy by season's end. He's gotta become more consistent.

Manny (Gloucester, MA)

Any cause for concern about the injuries to Rondo and Ray?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:49 PM)

Maybe if they're not on the floor tonight. Allen obviously had more than just the ankle to deal with given that his wife gave birth yesterday. Rondo seemed to be trying to fight his way into the lineup on Monday and I think they're just being careful with him. Despite the game-heavy schedule, the Celtics have erred on the side of caution hoping to prevent long-term injuries.

Ryan - (Manchester, NH)

What are the chances of a let-down from the C's tonight, especially after using up all that energy in their comeback last night and their tendency to not show up on the tail-end of back-to backs?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:52 PM)

If this was a normal back-to-back, I'd say this would be a very tough game. But maybe the Celtics have some extra momentum coming off last night and if they get a starter or two back, that would go a long way towards freshening their legs. Plus, Indy will be a playoff team, one the Celtics could always bump into. It would certainly aid the team to topple them at some point this season with two losses vs. the Pacers already.

John (SA)

What's up with Jermaine O'Neal now? How serious is this knee injury ( again )? I remember how last season went when soreness started, please don't tell me we are going through all that again.

Chris Forsberg
  (12:54 PM)

I'm interested to find out more on this tonight. I didn't put much into him sitting out practice Wednesday because that's been a familiar thing to rest his body. But to miss the game, after a three-day break, is quite concerning. Any soreness in that knee is cause for alarm.

charles (ri)

hey Chris - i love Bass' energy...but is his nickname of "no pass bass" going to hold true here in Boston (he was 4/12 last night from teh field)

Chris Forsberg
  (12:55 PM)

No, he was over-amped early against his former team, but played better down the stretch (hitting a big jumper after the C's rallied ahead). I'm fine with his no-conscious shooting. THat's what the Celtics need on that second unit. You want him and Pietrus firing away.

Tron (Waltham, MA)

Hey Chris, The last few seasons the celtics have gotten off to hot starts and then for whatever reason--whether it be resting players or injuries--they've played .500 ball in the second half of the season. Any chance the Celtics may be reversing this fortune and could possibly go into the playoffs as a 'hot' team?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:56 PM)

It's so hard to say in this crazy condensed season where nothing will make a whole lot of sense. Can't really compare it to year's past. Who knows how this will all play out. But last night was encouraging and a clear sign that you should buckle up for a bumpy ride.

Nick (AR)

Will the steamroller Stiemsma play more minutes tonight if J.O is out?

Chris Forsberg
  (12:58 PM)

He's gotta avoid foul trouble (four in the first half last night) and he's gotten tighten up his defense overall, but I'm sure the Celtics would like to see him take advantage if more court time is available. Wilcox's return is going to bite into his time.

kg (top of the world)

anythings posssible!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Chris Forsberg
  (1:00 PM)

That postgame interview was pure gold. I can't even pick out a favorite part. From asking Sager if he's been in a bar fight to saying that Ray Allen's new baby was 7-12 pounds to admitting he was "all over the map." Just hilarious. If he ended with "Yo soy fiesta" my head would have exploded.

david (boston)

can you send ray a congrats on the birth of his new baby boy. hope shannon and the baby are both healthy and doing well.

Chris Forsberg
  (1:00 PM)

Of course. The Celtics are 1-0 in the new baby's lifetime.

Marcel (Berlin, Germany)

Is Dooling's hip injury serious?

Chris Forsberg
  (1:01 PM)

He was out on the floor before the start of the second half, so my guess is no. We'll find out more tonight and see how both the hip and knee responded overnight.

Don (DC)

So shoud Danny Ainge break the Big 3 up now? What are your views?

Chris Forsberg
  (1:02 PM)

As I've maintained all along ,it's waaaaay too early to be stressing about such things. Let's see where this team is after, say, 30 games. If they hit rock bottom, I don't rule anything out. If they play like they did last night, their best shot is to ride this out and hope that they find that sort of chemistry and magic in the playoffs.

Pauper (NYC)

With Steimsma back down to earth, Bass getting a clue on defense, and Wilcox back, should we assume the Badger is going back in hiding?

Chris Forsberg
  (1:07 PM)

At first I thought you meant the Honey Badger (Bradley), but yeah, Stiemsma's minutes are going to be a little tougher to come by if Wilcox can stay on the floor and contribute. Again, to me, it all comes down to defense with Stiemsma. If he can improve on that end, he can still be a key member of this team.

d12 (boston)

get me out of orlando and into boston please

Chris Forsberg
  (1:07 PM)

Not exactly making much of a case for yourself these last two games. Just kidding, Dwight. Get to free agency and let's see what happens in the summer.

Alex (PA)

Chris, I know it's good to be optimistic, but I think you are fooling yourself if you think this C's team wins a title, the clearly aren't as good as the Heat or Bulls in the East.

Chris Forsberg
  (1:09 PM)

When have I ever suggested this team is title contender? I've said all along they've got second-round exit written all over them after their failed attempts at upgrading the roster this offseason. That said, I think they can certainly make a run if they stay healthy and peak at the right time. They just need an awful lot to go right in order to be true contenders.

Chris Forsberg
  (1:10 PM)

Alright, let's wrap it up there. Thanks for enduring the late start. Enjoy the game tonight. Like I said, buckle up, it's going to be a wild ride with this team. Enjoy the roller coaster.