Adam Silver, Marcus Smart (Boston.com)

Prior to Thursday night’s NBA Draft, there was a lot of talk about whether the Celtics should take highly-touted, but injured, Kansas center Joel Embiid, once a candidate for the top pick, if he were available at number six. Soon, the 76ers threw all that discussion right out the window by selecting Embiid with the third overall pick. Three selections later, Boston was on the board with plenty of talent to choose from in one of the deepest drafts in years, including, unexpectedly, Indiana power forward (and Haverhill native) Noah Vonleh, whose stock fell sharply in the last days before the draft.

General manager Danny Ainge, however, took Oklahoma State point guard Marcus Smart, and later added another perimeter player, shooting guard James Young out of Kentucky, with the 17th pick. While it’s no surprise that Ainge addressed the backcourt considering that the Celtics’ two SGs, Jerryd Bayless and Avery Bradley, are set to become free agents, the selection of Smart ensured that the conversation immediately turned to the future of Rajon Rondo. Let’s take a look at the two newest Celtics, and at what their selections could mean for Boston’s roster over the remainder of the offseason: Continue reading Celtics Address Backcourt in Draft: Analysis and Roster Implications »

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Evander Kane (Jets.NHL.com)

After an exciting sports week following a team USA advancement to the semifinals in the World Cup and the opening of the NBA draft that saw the Celtics take two young studs, what better way to wrap up the month than with the NHL Draft? This is one of the most exciting nights of the year for NHL die-hards and tonight promises to be one of the best drafts in years.

As I’ve said in previous articles, there is plenty of reason to believe that the draft and subsequent free agent signing period will be an exciting one. There are several premier players that have demanded a trade, there is a wealth of free agent talent available, the salary cap is going up for the first time in a while, and many teams find themselves pressed against the cap and will need to make a trade.

Without further ado, here is a list of some of the things to watch for regarding the Bruins and around the league. Continue reading Quick Hits: 2014 NHL Draft Preview »

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1. Cliff Notes:

* Like every draft – over hyped bore
* Red Sox stink – please unload players now
* We are desperate for Patriots training camp

2. World Cup:

* If Uruguay loses Suarez family better be careful
* Germany could have won that game 5-0
* Michael Bradley should be disgusted with his play so far
* Colombia vs. Brazil in the semi finals could be a great game and get ugly
* If you wear dreds – you better be really good Continue reading Connelly’s Top Ten: Knockout Round Will be Exciting »

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P. J. Hairston (SI.com)

On the morning of the NBA Draft, we take a look at one last prospect the Celtics should consider with their second pick, number 17 overall. Also check out our profiles of point guard Kyle Anderson, center Jusuf Nurkić, small forward T. J. Warren and shooting guard James Young.

Name: P. J. Hairston

Team: Texas Legends (D-League)

Position: Shooting guard

Age: 21

Stats: 6’6″, 230 lbs.

Background

Hairston had a breakout year in 2012-13, his sophomore season at North Carolina, averaging 14.6 points and 4.3 rebounds for the Tar Heels. Prior to his junior year, however, Hairston was suspended from the team for accepting improper benefits. When the suspension became definitive in January, Hairston chose to join the D-League, and signed with the Texas Legends, where he became an outstanding scorer in his 26 games, finishing the season with 21.8 ppg on 45.3% field goal shooting. Continue reading Celtics 2014 Draft Targets: P. J. Hairston »

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Hopefully Clay Buchholz doesn't have to look too far into the future to see his return to form, as he returns to the rotation tonight against the Seattle Mariners. (WEEI)

After making two rehab starts in Pawtucket, Clay Buchholz has been activated from the 15-day disabled list to make his first start in almost a month against the Seattle Mariners Wednesday night. He’ll be looking to salvage the finale after the Red Sox dropped the first two games of the series by scores of 12-3 and 8-2.

To make room for Buchholz on the 25-man roster, the Red Sox designated left-handed deliver Chris Capuano for assignment. Capuano had struggled of late in limited appearances, giving up 10 runs and 14 hits in only 4 innings of relief for the month of June.

Continue reading Buchholz Activated from DL, Capuano Designated for Assignment »

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Joel Embiid (Greg Nelson/SI)

For other candidates to be taken by the Celtics with the sixth overall pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft, read our profiles on Arizona PF Aaron Gordon, Kentucky PF Julius Randle and Oklahoma State PG Marcus Smart.

Name: Joel Embiid

College: Kansas

Position: Center

Age: 20

Stats: 7’0″, 250 lbs.

Background

Embiid, a native of Cameroon, was widely expected to be a top three pick in the Draft until he underwent right foot surgery and had two pins installed in his navicular bone, an injury which is expected to keep him out for at least four to six months, if not longer. The setback has thrown mock drafters, as well as team front offices, off, but his potential when healthy remains unaltered. Continue reading Celtics 2014 Draft Targets: Joel Embiid »

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The Patriots officially signed first round pick Dominique Easley on Monday. (Boston Globe)

Are you ready for some football?

Apparently first round pick Dominique Easley is, as the New England Patriots officially announced his signing on Monday. He was the final unsigned rookie draft pick of the Patriots.

Easley, who was the 29th overall pick out of Florida, reportedly signed a four-year contract worth $7.3 million, including a $3.63 million signing bonus and $5.89 million guaranteed.

Continue reading First Round Pick Dominique Easley Officially Signs with Patriots »

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