The rundown (a quick look at the pregame headlines)
Boxing gloves in the Celtics' locker room
While Celtics coach Doc Rivers swears there's no hidden message, eight boxing gloves autographed by Manny Pacquiao could be seen hanging in Boston's locker room before Wednesday's game against the Memphis Grizzlies.
A (blurry) look at a glove hanging in the C's locker room.See, the Celtics and Pacquiao became chummy back during Boston's championship season in 2008. After winning their 17th world championship, a handful of Celtics trekked to Las Vegas to watch Pacquiao defeat David Diaz for the WBC Lightweight title.
As documented by the Philippine Daily Inquirer, the Celtics made Pacquiao an honorary member of that championship squad. This video circulated of the Celtics celebrating with Pacquaio inside his locker room after the fight.
In a season where items encouraging Boston's players to rekindle that championship spirit have magically appeared in their locker room and at their practice facility, Rivers and his players claimed no special agenda.
"No message, [the gloves] magically appeared again," said Rivers. "I don't know how this stuff is getting in the locker room. Honestly, it wasn't from me. Pacquaio, obviously, is a huge Celtics fan and he tried to get to our shootaround -- or our walkthrough in the [team hotel] ballroom -- before we played the Lakers. He couldn't make it, so he sent [the gloves] to us. It's nice, a good gesture."
Glen Davis, Ray Allen, and Kendrick Perkins -- three of the lucky player recipients (at least of the gloves visible) that also included Brian Scalabrine, Paul Pierce, Rasheed Wallace, Nate Robinson, and Kevin Garnett -- all shrugged when asked about the gloves. Rivers admitted he got a glove as well.
"I don't know, I don't know how they got here," said Perkins. "The year we won [the NBA title] we went out to Vegas for one of his fights. We went in the locker room. We haven't seen him since, but he just sent the gloves."
Did Perkins see a hidden message?
"I don't know, what is [the message]? Beat somebody up?" Perkins asked with a smile.
Hudson misses out on Boston visit
On assignment with the Dakota Wizards, Memphis’ affiliate in the NBA Development League, rookie Lester Hudson missed his chance to visit the city where his professional career began.
Hudson, Boston’s second-round draft pick (58th overall) in the 2009 draft, appeared in 16 games here this season, scoring 22 points in 70 minutes. The Celtics waived Hudson on Jan. 4 before his contract became guaranteed for the season.
The move was made in part to open a roster spot for a veteran addition -- in the vein of Michael Finley -- but Boston ended up with a second roster spot available after making a five-player swap with the New York Knicks at the trade deadline and Hudson’s spot has essentially gone unfilled.
Hudson has appeared in eight games for the Grizzlies, scoring 34 points in 59 minutes. He started hot in February, scoring 13 points in a win over the Lakers, then dropping eight points against Cleveland. But he’s played little more than five minutes since then, and has not appeared since Feb. 9.
It's unlikely he'll get another shot in the NBA this season.
"He's going to be in the D-League probably for the rest of the year," admitted Memphis coach Lionel Hollins. "He's not a point guard and he's not a shooting guard. I'm not sure what he is. We're going to let him play, try to play the point, and see if he can improve. If he's going to play in the NBA, he's going to have to be a point guard."