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Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Mavericks reportedly deny Rajon Rondo playoff share 04.30.15 at 8:09 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NFL: Draft, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA playoffs: Bulls at Bucks, 7 p.m. (TNT)
NBA playoffs: Clippers at Spurs, 9:30 p.m. (TNT)
NHL playoffs: Capitals at Rangers, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL playoffs: Flames at Ducks, 10 p.m. (NBCSN)
MLB: Phillies at Cardinals, 1:45 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Tigers at Royals, 8:10 p.m. (MLB Network)

AROUND THE WEB:

— If there still was any question how the Mavericks feel about Rajon Rondo, it was answered Wednesday, when multiple reports out of Dallas indicated the players left the former Celtic off the list of those who will receive a playoff share.

Rondo appeared in the first two games in the team’s five-game first-round series against the Rockets, playing less than 10 minutes in Game 2. The team then said Rondo would not return in the series due to a back issue, although there are reports that in actuality the team was fed up with his behavior and both sides mutually agreed that he would stay away from the team.

According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the 14 other players on Dallas’ roster took an even split of the $208,940 awarded to the team for appearing in the first round, with no one nominating Rondo to receive a share.

Rondo is headed for free agency, and Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle already has made it clear that he does not expect him to return.

Despite Rondo’s failure to fit in, Mavericks president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson said he doesn’t regret sending Jae Crowder, Brandan Wright, Jameer Nelson and two draft picks to Boston to acquire the mercurial point guard on Dec. 18. Rondo averaged 8.9 points, 7.9 assists and 5.5 rebounds but the team only went 26-22 the rest of the regular season.

“That was definitely something worth pulling the trigger on,” Nelson said. “In our opinion, that was kind of the one piece that was missing. Certainly, a guy that’s 28 with the accolades and the championship experience and all defense and we’ve had a history of doing well with pass-first point guards.

“Sometimes when things are written down on paper, they look great; when things are going into the oven they feel great and a lot of times when it comes out sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. It was one of those things that in our estimation certainly wasn’t risk free, but it was certainly worth the risk. If we would’ve had to do it all over again, we would’ve pulled the trigger again.”

— Rockets social media manager Chad Shanks learned a difficult lesson Wednesday, as he was fired for a questionable tweet after the Rockets eliminated the Mavericks on Tuesday night.

Toward the end of the game, Shanks sent a tweet with an emoji of a pistol next to a horse and wrote: Shhhhh. Just close your eyes. It will all be over soon. The Mavs’ Twitter account noted that the tweet was “not very classy” but nonetheless wished Houston luck in the next round.

The Rockets’ tweet was removed and an apology followed, reading: Our Tweet earlier was in very poor taste & not indicative of the respect we have for the @dallasmavs & their fans. We sincerely apologize.

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Read More: Billy Donovan, rajon rondo,
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Paul Pierce details icy relationship with Ray Allen, criticizes ex-Nets teammates 04.15.15 at 8:15 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Nationals at Red Sox, 1:35 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Angels at Rangers, 2:05 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Yankees at Orioles, 7:05 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Mariners at Dodgers, 10 p.m. (ESPN2)
NBA: Celtics at Bucks, 8 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Hornets at Raptors, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Pacers at Grizzlies, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL playoffs: Senators at Canadiens, 7 p.m. (NHL Network)
NHL playoffs: Islanders at Capitals, 7 p.m. (USA)
NHL playoffs: Blackhawks at Predators, 8:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL playoffs: Flames at Canucks, 10 p.m. (USA)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Barcelona at Paris, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: Exhibition, Mexico at United States, 9 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

— There have long been indications that Ray Allen‘s relationship with his Celtics teammates was icy during their time in Boston, and on Tuesday Paul Pierce explained just how strained it was.

In an interview with ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan, Pierce offered some details about the Big Three’s time together. He said he has not talked to Allen since Allen left Boston as a free agent to sign with the Heat in the summer of 2012 — not because he’s angry, but more because there wasn’t that much depth to the relationship.

“It was a weird relationship,” Pierce said. “We were all good friends on the court, but Ray always did his own thing. That’s just the way Ray was. Even when we were playing together, we’d be having a team dinner and Ray wouldn’t show up. We’d go to his charity events, but Ray wouldn’t show up to somebody else’s. I called him on it. I said, ‘Man, Ray, we support all your stuff but when we ask you, you don’t come to ours.’

“I remember when [Rajon] Rondo re-signed with Boston, we had a little dinner at a restaurant and Ray didn’t show up. I know Ray probably didn’t like Rondo that much, but it wasn’t a fact of not liking somebody. You don’t have to like everybody you play with — it’s a matter of showing support. Rondo probably didn’t like Ray either, but he came to Ray’s functions to show, ‘Hey, we’re together in this.’

“It’s not a bad thing with Ray. We had a great relationship on the court. But even the year we won it, after a game we’d say, ‘Let’s go have something to eat and have a night with the older guys.’ We’d get there and it would be me, Kevin and Sam [Cassell], but no Ray. In a lot of ways, me, Sam and Kevin were our Big Three.

“It just got to the point where it was, ‘That’s Ray.’ No hard feelings. Everyone made such a big deal of us not talking after we left, but there really wasn’t much there.”

As for Rondo, Pierce said he’s trying to convince Wizards stars John Wall and Bradley Beal that they have to show up to play every single night if they want to be great, something he wasn’t able to convince Rondo to do.

“That was Rondo’s problem, too,” Pierce said. “Some days he did, some days he didn’t. I think it’s more this generation. A lot of these players have been catered to since the sixth grade. The NBA is changing so much. It’s not like when I came up, with that old-school mentality that practice really mattered. You’ve got these 24-, 25-year-old guys who sit out of practice now to rest. It’s hard for me to understand, but I’m trying.”

Pierce also discussed his “horrible” 2013-14 season in Brooklyn, criticizing the team’s players for not caring enough despite the efforts of Pierce and Kevin Garnett to fire them up.

“It was just the guys’ attitudes there. It wasn’t like we were surrounded by a bunch of young guys. They were vets who didn’t want to play and didn’t want to practice. I was looking around saying, ‘What’s this?’ Kevin and I had to pick them up every day in practice,” Pierce said. “If me and Kevin weren’t there, that team would have folded up. That team would have packed it in. We kept them going each and every day.”

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Read More: Deron Williams, Mark Reeds, Paul Pierce, rajon rondo
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Mavericks PG Rajon Rondo benched after verbal exchange with coach 02.25.15 at 7:58 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Knicks at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Clippers at Rockets, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Spurs at Trail Blazers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: UMass at Saint Joseph’s, 7 p.m. (NESN Plus)
College basketball: UConn at East Carolina, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Virginia at Wake Forest, 7 p.m. (NESN)
College basketball: VCU at Richmond, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Central Florida at Cincinnati, 7:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Tulane at Tulsa, 8 p.m. (ESPNews)
College basketball: Marquette at Butler, 8 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Duke at Virginia Tech, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Baylor at Iowa State, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Florida State at Miami, 9 p.m. (NESN)
College basketball: Freso State at Wyoming, 9:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Washington at UCLA, 11 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Oregon at California, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)
NHL: Penguins at Capitals, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Monaco at Arsenal, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

Rajon Rondo‘s honeymoon in Dallas appears to be over.

The former Celtic, who has a history of run-ins with coaches and teammates, had a profanity-laced exchange with Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle during a third-quarter timeout and then was stuck on the bench the rest of the night as his team rallied for a 99-92 victory Tuesday night over the visiting Raptors.

The incident started early in the third quarter. With the Mavs trailing by nine, Rondo dribbled the ball past midcourt as Carlisle appeared to call for a play only to be brushed off by his point guard. The coach then abruptly called a timeout and the two argued as the team returned to the bench. Carlise would only say that they had a “difference of opinion.” As for why Rondo did not return to the game, Carlisle said: “Because I’m the coach and that’s the decision I made at that time.”

Added Carlisle: “I thought it worked out well. The other guys stepped up and we were able to win.”

Rondo, who finished with four points, four assists, two turnovers and three fouls, reportedly has been frustrated with his lack of play-calling responsibilities. He did not speak after the game.

Dirk Nowitzki, who scored 18 points, said: “Stuff like that is never good. It’s unfortunate, but it happens. It’s about how the team responds.”

Owner Mark Cuban played down the issue, saying: “It’s an emotional game and sometimes emotions come out. It’s happened many times in the past and will happen many more in the future.”

Carlisle indicated he doesn’t plan to change his rotation for the future, implying the Rondo will start Wednesday night’s game against the Eastern Conference-leading Hawks.

Said Carlisle: “That’s what we brought him here for.”

— Keith Olbermann, no stranger to controversy for his behavior, was suspended by ESPN for insulting Penn State students on Twitter.

Olbermann responded to a tweet from a Penn State alumnus about students raising more than $13 million to fight pediatric cancer by writing that Penn State students are “pitiful,” and that their fundraising “doesn’t change the school’s reputation.”

He eventually apologized, tweeting: I was stupid and childish and way less mature than the students there who did such a great fundraising job.

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Read More: Keith Olbermann, rajon rondo, Rick Carlisle, Roger Goodell
Mavericks PG Rajon Rondo to miss at least 3 games following facial injury 02.02.15 at 1:17 pm ET
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Mavericks point guard Rajon Rondo will miss at least three games after suffering a nasal fracture and an orbital fracture in his left eye in Dallas’ Saturday night game against the Magic.

Less than two minutes into the game, Rondo was accidentally kneed by teammate Richard Jefferson.

“Hopefully, he has a quick and speedy recovery,” Jefferson said. “Luckily we have the All-Star break not far away, so hopefully that will give him some more time to get right. He’s a tough guy.”

Rondo was traded by the Celtics on Dec. 19 after months of tension in Boston. Since arriving in Dallas following the trade, Rondo has missed only one game.

Rondo will miss games against Minnesota, Golden State and Sacramento, and will be tested over the next few days to determine if he will need to miss more time.

It is unclear who will replace Rondo in his absence. The top options appear to be Devin Harris, J.J. Barea and Raymond Felton.

“We’ve just got to make it work with the guys that we have available in these situations, and we will,” Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said. “This is part of the challenge of an NBA season.”

Read More: celtics, Dallas Mavericks, rajon rondo,
Top Boston Sports Stories of 2014, No. 3: Celtics trade Rajon Rondo to Mavericks 12.30.14 at 4:29 pm ET
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Over the final days of the year, WEEI.com will count down the top 14 stories of 2014 in Boston sports. This is No. 3: Celtics trade Rajon Rondo to Mavericks. To read other stories in this series, click here.

The rumors began to swirl quickly one night, and he was out of Boston by the next.

After eight-plus seasons with the Celtics, point guard Rajon Rondo was traded to the Mavericks with rookie Dwight Powell in exchange for Brandon Wright, Jameer Nelson, Jae Crowder and two draft picks — a 2015 first-rounder and a 2016 second-round selection.

The Celtics said in a statement after the trade they were appreciative of what Rondo did during his time in Boston.

“We would like to thank Rajon for everything that he has done for the Celtics organization and the success we have experienced during his tenure with us,” Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge said.

“We would not have won Banner 17 without Rajon and will always consider him one of our most valuable Celtics, both on the court and in the community working with kids,” Celtics managing partners Wyc Grousbeck, Irv Grousbeck, Steve Pagliuca and Robert Epstein said. “We will always cherish the time he was here.”

The trade finally happened on a late December day, though the first discussions about Rondo leaving the C’s came a year earlier. The Celtics limped to a 25-57 record in 2013-14, and many thought Boston would unload its top player. But Rondo was sidelined for most of the year because of a torn ACL from the season prior, and he was limited to just 30 games. A trade would have to wait.

With one year remaining on his contract, the rumors brewed throughout the summer before the 2014-15 season that Rondo would be moved elsewhere. Reports said Rondo would be everywhere from Sacramento to Houston before the season started.

Rondo said that he couldn’t focus too much on all of the trade speculation. It was just part of the game.

“I don’t have too many feelings involved in this business,” Rondo said. “I’ve played my heart out for the game, but business is business. I can be here today, gone tomorrow. You never know. For me to get bent out of shape, or to feel threatened by the Celtics drafting a point guard, it means nothing.”

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Read More: Brad Stevens, Danny Ainge, Jameer Nelson, rajon rondo
Top Boston Sports Stories of 2013, No. 11: Rajon Rondo suffers season-ending ACL injury 12.22.13 at 9:04 am ET
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Over the final days of the year, WEEI.com will count down the top 13 stories of 2013 in Boston sports. This is No.11: Rajon Rondo suffers season-ending ACL injury. To see the previous entries, click here.

When the Celtics fell to the Hawks, 123-111, in double-overtime on Jan. 25, 2013, it represented a heartbreaking loss for a team desperate for a victory. The loss dropped the C’s three games below .500 for the second time in the 2012-13 season, and it marked their sixth straight defeat, their longest losing streak since they lost 18 in a row during their horrendous 2007 campaign.

Unbeknownst to the C’s, they’€™d also lost arguably their best player, a loss that would set off a massive rebuilding process in Boston, and the eventual removal of their championship-winning coach. Rajon Rondo, a Celtic since 2007 and the starting point guard of the 2008 team that won the Larry O’€™Brien Trophy, suffered a torn ACL during the game, an injury that would force him to miss the rest of the 2012-13 season and at least the first two months of the 2013-14 campaign.

The severity of Rondo’€™s injury was revealed both to Boston’€™s players and a national audience in the middle of the team’€™s second straight double-overtime game, a 100-98 win over the Heat on Jan. 27.

“It was shocking, frustrating,” Rondo said. “I wanted to play against the Heat that day, Sunday, and I thought I was playing. But maybe 30 minutes on the clock I did my ritual, my routine, I got in the shower and something was telling me this just didn’t feel right.”

Before his injury, Rondo averaged career highs in points (13.7), rebounds (5.6) and minutes (37.4) and dished out 11.1 assists per game, which would have placed him second in the NBA in that stat.

“Obviously the Rondo news is tough,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said after the Miami game. “I knew before the game, but I didn’t tell anyone. Obviously it was pretty emotional.”

Forward Kevin Garnett, one of Rondo’€™s closest friends on the team, expressed his disappointment as well.

“It was a big blow to everybody in here, me included,” Garnett said. “Man, that hurt. It’s tough. We had a tough game, came in, and he told the whole team in the locker room. It’s tough, tough on everybody.

“[Rondo is] becoming the heart and soul of this team. He’s coming into his own. Had some bumps in the road, but we’re just trying to be supportive for him.”

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Read More: Boston Sports Stories of the Year 2013, Danny Ainge, doc rivers, kevin garnett
LEEInks List: Devastating injuries to Boston athletes in past decade 02.12.13 at 11:51 am ET
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It’s been a rough few weeks for the Celtics. First it was Rajon Rondo going down with a season-ending ACL tear. Then Jared Sullinger was lost for the season with a back issue that will require surgery. Now, Leandro Barbosa appears to have suffered a serious knee injury in Monday night’s loss to the Bobcats that ended Boston’s seven-game winning streak.

Where do the C’s go from here? The team can take one of two paths. President of basketball operations Danny Ainge could stick with the team he has minus Rondo, Sullinger and Barbosa, maybe make a couple of small upgrades before the trade deadline, and hope for an unlikely long playoff run. Some are pushing for Ainge to “blow up” the team, make a significant trade or two (possibly involving career-long Celtic Paul Pierce or the emotional team leader Kevin Garnett) and look toward the organization’s future. This might lead to the team missing out on the postseason for the first time since the 2006-07 season (the year before the C’s acquired Garnett and Ray Allen).

Whatever Ainge, Doc Rivers and the organization decide to do, it seems that these injuries — especially to the All-Star Rondo — are a crushing blow to the team’s already slim chances at a deep playoff run.

This certainly isn’t the only time a Boston team has been bitten bad by the injury bug. With that in mind, here are 10 of the most devastating injuries affecting Boston sports teams in the last 10 years.

10. Patriots, 2005 — Rodney Harrison suffers season-ending knee injury

By 2005, Harrison was a 12-year NFL veteran, slightly old and injury-prone. In a Week 3 matchup vs. the Steelers, the safety tore his ACL, MCL and PCL and was done for the season. To add to that, offensive lineman Matt Light also was lost for the season during the same game. Harrison was the team’s veteran leader in the secondary and his absence was costly. The Patriots lost to the Broncos in the AFC divisional round that postseason.

9. Red Sox, 2010 — Jacoby Ellsbury misses majority of season with multiple issues

Injuries decimated the Red Sox at a historic pace in 2010, as 19 players combined for 24 stints on the disabled list, and many of them were key players on the roster. Ellsbury had three of those 24 stints. In April, Ellsbury was placed on the 15-day DL after colliding with third baseman Adrian Beltre and injuring his ribs. Ellsbury came back at the end of May but re-injured the ribs and went back on the disabled list. Again, Ellsbury rejoined the Red Sox in the beginning of August, but after a week and a half, Ellsbury was done for the season.

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Read More: Jacoby Ellsbury, kevin garnett, rajon rondo, Rodney Harrison
Top Stories of 2012, No. 5: Celtics burned by Heat in Eastern Conference finals 12.29.12 at 7:55 pm ET
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Over the final week of 2012, WEEI.com will count down the top 10 stories of the year in Boston sports. This entry in the countdown is No. 5: the Celtics‘ loss to the Heat in the Eastern Conference finals.

Check out our previous entries:
No. 10: NHL lockout
No. 9: Wes Welker’s up-and-down year
No. 8: Bruins’ early playoff elimination
No. 7: Ray Allen’s departure from Celtics
No. 6: Tim Thomas’ political controversy and sabbatical

The Celtics were one victory away from advancing to the NBA finals. But what stood in the way, LeBron James and the Miami Heat, turned out to be more than the Big Three and the rest of the Celtics could handle.

A 101-88 defeat in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals put an abrupt end to a playoff run that looked like it had legs after a comeback season from the Celtics, who were under .500 at the All-Star break of a lockout-shortened season.

The C’€™s battled injury issues all season. Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox had season-ending heart ailments. Jermaine O’Neal had his season end early, and Avery Bradley missed the Heat series. Even as the playoffs began, a sprained MCL slowed down Paul Pierce and bone spurs kept Ray Allen off the floor.

After finishing first in the Atlantic Division at 39-27, the Celtics took down the Hawks in six games in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs. They went on to get by the 76ers in a seven-game series and line things up for a big series with the Heat.

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Read More: 2012 Stories of the Year, Brandon Bass, Chris Bosh, doc rivers
Top Stories of 2011, No. 8: Celtics’ playoff loss to Heat 12.24.11 at 12:00 pm ET
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For the final 10 days of 2011, WEEI.com will count down the top 10 stories of the year in Boston sports. Our next entry in the countdown is No. 8: The Celtics‘ playoff loss to the Heat.

Check out our previous entries:
No. 10: NBA lockout
No. 9: NFL lockout

Even before the start of the 2010-11 NBA season, Doc Rivers knew that there was one team the Celtics were going to have to face if they were to put together another championship run. When the Heat formed their own Big Three with Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, it was evident that Boston and the new superteam on South Beach would end up in a postseason showdown at some point.

So it was no surprise that after sweeping the Knicks in the first round of the playoffs, the Celtics were preparing to face the Heat win what many called the most anticipated second-round matchup in NBA history.

‘€œWe assumed when they put this team together, at some point if we want to put another banner up then we’€™ll probably have to go through them,’€ Rivers said of the Heat days before the series began.

The Celtics were 3-1 against Miami in the regular season, but all three wins came before the All-Star break, when Boston was 40-14, tied with the Heat atop the Eastern conference standings. After the All-Star break, the Celtics were just 16-12, dropping to third in the Eastern conference, while the Bulls and Heat rose to the top to secure the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds, respectively.

Many attributed Boston’s poor play in the second half the season to the trade of Kendrick Perkins. The menacing center was traded to the Thunder along with guard Nate Robinson on Feb. 24 in exchange for center Nenad Kristic, young forward Jeff Green and a 2012 first-round pick.

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Read More: doc rivers, kevin garnett, Paul Pierce, rajon rondo
Top Stories of 2011, No. 10: NBA lockout 12.22.11 at 5:16 pm ET
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For the final 10 days of 2011, WEEI.com will count down the top 10 stories of the year in Boston sports. Our first entry in the countdown is No. 10: The NBA lockout.

After a summer of doubt, NBA commissioner David Stern went from Grinch to Santa when he delivered the gift of a 2011-12 NBA season. Basketball fans worldwide can rejoice on Christmas Day when they get to see their beloved league back in action, even if the season is shortened.

The lockout started July 1, as owners and players disagreed on terms of a new collective bargaining agreement. Primarily, the disagreement centered on who would get the majority of the league’s income. There was more to the CBA than that, of course, but the fact that the owners wanted to recapture more of the income pie left the players up in arms.

Over the course of the summer, negotiations were held between the leagues executives and the NBA players union, led by Billy Hunter, who oversaw the union’s litigation against the league during the 1998 NBA lockout.

With the experienced Hunter at the helm and Lakers guard Derek Fisher in charge of the players, the NBA went into a stalemate all summer. With neither the owners nor players budging on their terms and the season right around the corner, Stern made the move on October to cancel the first two weeks of the season, a blow to revenue for players and owners alike.

Stern went on to cancel the first quarter of the season when the players union made its first major move of the lockout by filing two anti-trust lawsuits against the owners.

On Thanksgiving, the two sides finally broke down and agreed to a new deal. According to Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck, common sense prevailed.

“The general concept was this is regrettable to have this lockout,” he said during Wednesday’s appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show. “If there is a deal, we might as well just go ahead and get to it. If there isn’€™t, that would be very disappointing.”

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Read More: Danny Ainge, David Stern, Jeff Green, rajon rondo