What a night last night. Went through just about every emotion you could think of during my 5 1/2 hours at the Garden for C's-Wiz. While there I felt it all: happiness, frustration, worry, anger, excitement, exhaustion, relief and gratitude (is that an emotion?). I got to the Garden at about 6pm as a friend of mine hooked me up with a few Legends passes. For those not familiar, Legends is an exclusive restaurant/bar at the Garden that is accessible only if you have passes. And to purchase passes, you must be a season-ticket holder. Well those who know me are aware that I'm a Celtics junkie-so I generally skip Legends and go right to the court to watch the Celtics, their opponents and sometimes the dancers warming-up/working-out. It really is fun to be in the Garden before the general public and get a chance to watch the night unfold. When we walked in last night, the 1st thing we noticed was Michael Finley working out with C's assistant coach Clifford Ray. Fin was taking perimeter jumpers mostly and hitting just about all of them. While watching Finley, I noticed ESPN Boston's Chris Forsberg sitting courtside working away, as usual, on his laptop. We chatted for a moment about whether or not Michael would play and how as a sports journalist in Boston, Chris is grateful for all the passionate fans that keep him motivated to dig for all the latest "scoops" on the C's. He is a great guy and really does a hell of a job keeping the fans up to date on all the Celtics news. I then went back over with some of my friends and said hi to Shelden Williams, who went through an absolutely rigorous workout pregame. Basically, one of the Celtics strength trainers puts a huge elastic arounnd Shel's waist, and Shel pulls the kid around like a horse and carriage. That was followed by sprints up and down the floor and numerous other jumping/pulling exercises. After his workout, he stopped and took a picture with me and didn't head down the tunnel until he signed for every kid that wanted an autograph. Dedicated guy with a great attitude. After watching Rondo and Scal play one-on-one, (see video) I said "see you at haltime" to my buddy Corey and we headed to our seats.
Now before tip-off, I did think the Wizards young bigs would give the C's older players some trouble, but I had no idea what I was about to witness. During the game, the crowd became more and more angry as time went on. At this point, I was totally into this game. I was screaming at the refs, yelling at the Wiz players as they took free-throws and cheering the C's on all I could. As time was winding down in the 4th, fans started to leave the game. This has happened quite a few times this year, and it always gets me mad. But not us-we stayed, as bad as it looked, as frustrated as we were, we stayed. Then the turning point happened: their was a mad scramble for a loose ball and KG grabbed it and quickly called a timeout. That is what champions do-if they can't make a difference on the scoreboard, they do the little things that make oh such a big difference. Watching KG last night was tough at times. You could see he was tired and worn down from battling with the younger and quicker Blatche and McGee all night. But he still used whatever energy he had left, he still dug deep and got that loose ball. And then SugarRay did the rest. One friend who was with me is a HUGE Ray Allen fan and she was ELATED that she could be there live to see him drill those two huge shots. After the game was over, I was totally spent. Then I got a text inviting me to go down by the locker rooms to see/chat with some of the Celtics. You don't have to ask me that twice.
We made our way thru Section 2 down past security to the family waiting area. There we saw most of the players-Fabricio Oberto came over and said what up to Finley. Glen Davis came out in a sharp 3-piece suit and gave the fans a big cheesy wave and smile in typical Davis goofiness. Rondo and his brother made their way out-we all said "great job tonight Rondo", and he acknowledged us with a wave. I then got to meet Marquis Daniels who was very down-to-earth and took the time to talk for a minute before taking a quick pic with me. I'm a big fan of not only his work on the court but also his music and he was optimistic that a new mixtape would be out soon. We then ended this great night by exchanging hellos and hugs with Perk, his lovely wife Vanity and of course Lil' Perk who is just the cutest kid you'll ever see. Nights like these are why I love sports and love the Boston Celtics. Here are some pics that I sent over Twitter earlier. They include; Shelden and I, after his ridiculous workout, my friend Corey, myself and Marquis Daniels, and Michael Finley working out on the parquet.