Atlantic Notes: Celtics, Knicks, Dolan, Nets

Armed with the third-best record in the East and the fifth-best mark in the NBA, the Celtics and president of basketball operations Danny Ainge don’t have a strong preference about what format the league should take if and when it resumes its season, as Steve Bulpett of The Boston Herald writes.

“It doesn’t really matter,” Ainge said. “There’s so many different opinions on what should be done. I think (commissioner) Adam (Silver) has a tough job keeping everybody happy — well, that’s an impossible job. But I think that I trust Adam will do the right thing, and whatever he decides, we’ll follow along.

“There’s not one thing that I’m adamantly dying for from the different plans,” Ainge continued. “I mean, there’s some I like a little bit more, but, listen, we all have to play under the same rules.”

Based on teams’ current records, the Celtics would face Philadelphia in the first round of the postseason, whether the NBA sticks to its usual East/West format or reseeds teams one through 16, regardless of conference. As the third-best team in the East, the C’s won’t be affected by any form of play-in tournament unless the league opts for a group stage format similar to soccer’s World Cup.

Here’s more from around the Atlantic:

  • A number of Knicks players and employees were “furious” that the team didn’t make a public statement about the death of George Floyd, according to Pablo S. Torre of ESPN (Twitter link), who passed along an internal memo sent to MSG employees by owner James Dolan explaining the team’s silence. Several Knicks players marched in protests or expressed their opinions on social media, tweets Adam Zagoria of Forbes. Meanwhile, Torre tweets that “dozens of disgruntled” MSG employees met today without Dolan to discuss his memo, prompting the Knicks’ owner to issue another message to his employees. Ian Begley of has the details on that.
  • Nets owner Joseph Tsai is continuing to pay hourly arena workers at Barclays Center, as Net Income of NetsDaily details. While Brooklyn’s season would almost certainly have been over by now, the arena also hosts the WNBA’s New York Liberty and dozens of other concerts and events that have been canceled due to COVID-19.
  • Jared Weiss and John Hollinger of The Athletic discuss how the Celtics should go about building around Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown over the long term.
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25 thoughts on “Atlantic Notes: Celtics, Knicks, Dolan, Nets

  1. acarneglia

    It’s not Dolan or the MSG Company’s responsibility to comment on George Floyd. You can’t force people to say something just to say it.

    • Jeff Zanghi

      Yeah I’m not entirely sure what the Knicks players are upset about… I mean I don’t have anything against if the Knicks had made a statement… But the incident happened in Minnesota so it’s not even like it happened in the City the Knicks play in. Idk I don’t really think the team should have had an obligation one way or another in regards to making a statement or not. Had they made a nice statement that would’ve been great — but idk I just don’t feel like they needed to for any particular reason. Unless I’m missing something?

    • They’re not forcing him to say or do anything. They’re just letting him know that they’re mad and frustrated with him. I mean, I don’t know what they expected from James Dolan of all people, but here we are. Tons of teams and large corporations have made public statements about it (for example, the Nets made a public statement), and not a peep from Dolan/the Knicks.

      • People really shouldn’t have to look for new reasons to be angry and frustrated at James Dolan. Or write stories painting him as making an ass of himself.

        There is nothing new or interesting here. It’s akin to more stories about how the Knicks are making changes to turn their fortunes. They will always be doing that, because MSG is a center of misery for lost souls and nothing is changing while Dolan is the top potato there.

  2. jr.white

    Slightly worried about the c’s getting the sixers in the first round. Neutral site hurts their chances given philly’s dismal road record this year and philly has played well in their head to head matchups this year. But by far the worst thing to come out of the play stoppage is Memphis making the playoffs. Was looking forward to getting a lottery pick this year, even thought it’s a thin draft, iirc

  3. Sillivan

    Future is Celtics is trade or draft?

    What trade can put Celtics over the top of nba?

    • slapnuts

      Never mind that this is a horrible trade that Danny Ainge would never, ever make., why would it be a “rebuild” for the Thunder?!?! They were 40-24 when the season stopped, they have CP3, Gallinari, and Schroeder. Adding Brown would make them even better. That’s not a “rebuild”

  4. KnickerbockerAl

    Freak Dolan. Nobody likes or wants him in NY. Daddy gave him MSG, Knicks, Rangers. He’s a tyrant like Trump. No wonder he supports him. Explains a lot really. He has a business in where 70% of the talent is black Americans. Absolutely should have something to say. This is systemic, institutionalized racism. NYC will not let him get away with this. I promise you that. If you don’t have a problem with the way blacks are treated by police. Then you are a racist too. Read your freaking history. It’s 2020 wake the Freak up.

    • andremets

      And how exactly will NYers like myself not let Dolan get away with “this”? Should I go to MSG and loot the arena? That’ll teach him!

      • We should stop going to and watching Knick games. Stop supporting them in any way. It’ll never happen (the team has been trash for almost 20 years now and is still top 10 in attendance), but that’s how us NYers could not let Dolan get away with this.

  5. Simmons>Russ

    New idea to building around Zion and the Pelicans…

    Sign and trade Brandon Ingram for Cam Reddish Dwayne Dedmon and the Hawks pick in the draft (4th)

    Trade Jrue Holiday and the Pelicans pick in this years draft (13th) for Gary Harris, Micheal Porter Jr and a second.

    This gives you the building blocks of Zion Williamson Lonzo Ball Micheal Porter Jr Cam Reddish plus the hawks 4th overall pick and their current bunch of young players Jaxson Hayes and NAW

    With Zion you know you have a generational talent who is a small PF really who can play SF… he can shoot a little outside but he scores most his points being bigger stronger faster.
    So you want to pair him with shooters, good passers and other players that can play quick and up tempo. Ball is the playmaking point who is developing a good 3. Reddish was Zions mate at Duke and is developing into a nice 3 and D player. Micheal Porter JR is a combo forward who has a complete offensive package and great size. Dedmon gives you a shot blocking centre that can also give you spacing for Zion. Gary Harris is another asset you can either keep or trade later.

    1. Ball. Hart
    2. Harris. Reddick. NAW.
    3. Porter JR. Reddish. Miller
    4. Williamson. Melli
    5. Dedmon. Hayes

    *Plus the 4th pick in the draft*
    Plus with Cap space
    Favours (17.5mil) Moore (8.5mil)

  6. Sillivan

    Pelicans wouldn’t be enough to make playoffs

    Last year conference finals Warriors and Blazers are in

  7. Al Hirschen

    I have been a Knick fan my whole life, but I doubt I can stay one. Time to start thinking about
    , I guess.

  8. K3vin

    The MSG and Knicks employees should be glad Dolan didn’t put out a statement, because he is a idiot.

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