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Showing posts from November, 2023

Bronny James-to-Celtics in 2024 draft one Hell of a longshot

  Where do I start? There are many potential negatives involved in the Boston Celtics choosing Bronny James in the 2024 NBA draft. Bronny's dad, Lebron James , has stated he would sign with the team that drafts his son . His present contract with the Lakers has a "player option" attached to it for the 2024-25 season. So, should he choose, he could opt out and become a free agent - able to pick his own team. But there would be no way Boston could afford the $51.4 million Lebron is slated to earn if he remains with Los Angeles. So what if agrees to take far less? Then comes to mind the massive ego and the fit and synergy with the Jay Team - or lack thereof. And how about the medical concerns with Bronny - who went into cardiac arrest this past summer due to a heart defect. That could be a major concern. Mock NBA drafts have the younger James going anywhere from the late-lottery to not being drafted at all. The incentive for some teams to go ahead and draft Bronny woul

Coach Mazzulla may not be your "Average Joe"

  Kudos to Celtics Coach Joe Mazzulla! Since taking over the reins from Ime Udoka, he has amassed a record of 71-29 in his first 100 games - a winning percentage of .710. To be honest, I was skeptical when Brad Stevens decided to go with a young coach with some negative history in his college playing days . But Mazzulla has more-than-weathered the storm. Joe Mazzulla's record through 100 games as Boston's head coach: 71-29. He currently has the highest winning percentage (.710) of any coach in NBA history. — ☘︎ (@CelticsRepublic) November 29, 2023 Per ,  Here are the winningest Celtics coaches, all-time: K C Jones - .751 Bill Fitch - .738 Joe Mazzulla - .710 Celtics fans have been through some tough times over the past decades - with the Rick Pitino era taking the "Booby Prize" . Joe has taken some hits - some perhaps deserved - but he has persevered and the initial results are in. We very likely don't have an "Avera

Chi Town Vs Bean Town

In what should be the last we hear of the in season tournament, the Celtics welcome the Bulls. Whatever these unlikable rules are, say the C's need to destroy the Bulls by a ton of points. Personally this in season tournament is a waste. It's set up for weaker teams and fan bases to claim some type of trophy. Celtics fans don't want or need in season tournament championships. We want BANNER 18 and that is all this season is about. Personally this in season is set up for someone who is very weak mentally from a sports perspective and loves to flop. It's also set up for a franchise who has been given players and calls more so than anyone else in the league. That's right the LA Fakers.  1st Quarter 🏀 JB owns the first quarters lately and he starts us off with a three tonight. Early on the Celtics ball movement looks very smooth. Jrue off his ankle injury, gets on the board with a three! Good to have him back, he's an all around complete basketball player and one o

Doubtful that Jaylen Brown replaces Kevin McHale as Celtics "Black Hole"

  Danny Ainge once (at least once) called teammate, Kevin McHale "The Black Hole" because once the ball was passed into McHale in the pivot - it never came back out . Kevin's compadres knew they would not see the ball again once the 6'10" forward caught their pass, but he had great inside moves and had a career .554 on field goals. His career assist average was 2.0 APG. Now to Jaylen Brown . Jaylen has a career assist average of 2.8 APG , and his number this season is at 3.6 APG. But rightly so, his field goal career percentage is at .475 - not bad, but not up to McHale standards. It is well-known among NBA analysts that Brown is known for sometimes forcing his offense, but if he can continue his synergy with teammate, Kristaps Porzingis , that may change. Getting it to the big Latvian for easy hoops may win a number of games for Boston this season. So, for now, there is little danger of Jaylen Brown playing second fiddle to Kevin McHale as Boston's "

Neemias Queta definitivamente necesita más miradas de Joe Mazzulla

 En 15 minutos de juego en la victoria de Boston por 113-103 sobre los Hawks, Neemias Queta aportó siete puntos, 10 rebotes (6 ofensivos), un robo y un más/menos de +5. Así es como se ve por cada 36 minutos: 17 puntos - 24 rebotes - dos robos Queta getting in on the action 🔥 — Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) November 26, 2023 El mejor esfuerzo del pívot de 7' y 250 libras salió del cristal ofensivo (6 rebotes ofensivos). Puede que haya fallado sus cinco intentos de tiro desde cualquier distancia, pero su trabajo con el tablero, su defensa y su ajetreo le valieron su primer premio Tommy: Neemius Queta wins his first Tommy Award with 7 points and 10 rebounds in 15 minutes — Danielle Hobeika (@DanielleHobeika) November 27, 2023 Con Kristaps Porzingis fuera por una lesión en la pantorrilla, los fanáticos de Boston vieron a Queta acumular más minutos que Luke Kornet. Espere que Joe Mazzulla mire más a Queta en los próx

Neemias Queta definitely needs more looks from Joe Mazzulla

 In 15 minutes of play in Boston's 113-103 win over the Hawks, Neemias Queta supplied s even points, 10 rebounds (6 offensive), one steal and a plus/minus of +5 . Here's what that looks like on a per-36-minutes basis: 17 points - 24 rebounds - two steals Queta getting in on the action 🔥 — Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) November 26, 2023 The 7', 250-pound center's best effort came off the offensive glass (6 offensive boards). He may have missed all-five of his shot attempts from any distance, but his board work, defense and hustle earned him his first Tommy Award: Neemius Queta wins his first Tommy Award with 7 points and 10 rebounds in 15 minutes — Danielle Hobeika (@DanielleHobeika) November 27, 2023 With Kristaps Porzingis out with a calf injury, Boston fans saw Queta pick up more minutes than Luke Kornet . Expect Joe Mazzulla to take further looks at  Queta in the next few games.

Short Staffed

  C's are down two of their super five as both Holiday and Porzingis are out. Hoping everyone had a nice Thanksgiving! Sorry I missed last game I was working.  1st Quarter ☘️ C's are off to a nice start led by JB! Al Horford is playing some very stout defense! Hawks play very little defense, but love scoring points. Plenty of minutes out here tonight for the bench. Sam I am for Three Hauser, hits his first shot. PP hits his first shot as well, you guessed it a three! Derrick White looks ready to play and expect him to have a good one tonight. I have to be honest these New Balance shoe commercials are, well not good. Luke Kornet is dominant in the post so far. JT is embarrassing Matthews. He should own him all game! C's lead after the first.  2nd Quarter ☘️☘️ C's are very active on the glass tonight as a team. Atlanta is over performing early on. C's will need to tighten up their defense. Queta gets a BUCKET! JT making threes, he's heating up folks! JT again!!! Q

Short & Sweet: Hanging-on-rim focus by refs is a mistake

  First it was Al Horford . Then in Boston's recent loss to the Magic, it was Jayson Tatum assessed a technical foul for hanging on the rim. This focus on what NBA referees view as a celebration after a dunk is not good for the game or the players . As Tatum indicated following the loss, players hang on to the rim briefly to avoid injury via an unbalanced landing or coming down on another player. Granted, we have all seen some players treating the rim as a pull-up bar in the gym following a slam dunk. That is celebratory and should be treated as such. But there are enough injuries and rules that slow the game down. The techs against both Al and Jayson were unwarranted. It is still a subjective call, but the refs should not be calling for a tech every time someone briefly hangs on the rim - checks the landing spot - and comes down from the heights. That is all! Is the NBA wrong in focusing so closely on their players that hang on the rim after dunks. If it's clearly a prolon

If you missed it, Derrick White among 10 players deserving "THANKS"

  Derrick White is very-simply the kind of player no one should hate . But beyond that, NBA.COM's Shaun Powell has labeled him as 1-of-10 NBA players deserving "THANKS" at this time of year ( per Shaun Powell ): 10. Derrick White, Celtics You could make the case that White is, all things considered, the second-most impressive Celtic (so far). His impact at both ends is proving invaluable and keeping Boston in the East attic. He’s accepting the toughest defensive assignments and showing great range in that area (especially on the perimeter). He won’t get many shots on a team with Tatum, Brown and Porzingis but when it comes his way, he’s efficient. Now at 42.6% from deep, best among Celtic starters. I, for one, love seeing this kind of recognition for a guy that plays his heart out, makes last-second heroic stops and hoops - and never gives up on a play . He is a classic 2-way dynamo that will win a number of games for his team this season - without putting up staggering n

Jaylen Brown-Kristaps Porzingis friendship evident in Celtics win over Bucks

  Jaylen Brown had a game-high eight assists in Boston's 119-116 win over Milwaukee last night. No, that is not a misprint . But it is interesting that five of those dimes were to Kristaps Porzingis . The friendship and synergy between the two is working in the Celtics favor - big time. The two guys live in the same building and get along, both off the court and on it. That means that almost-half of the Latvian's points (total of 21 in the game) came off passes from his building-mate, Brown . In the past, Boston has too-often used energy-consuming isolations to rack up points. With the acquisition of Porzingis, that has changed, and with Jaylen looking to pass more for easy hoops, the season is filled with promise. Boston fans saw little of the forced drives by Brown in this contest, and the Celtics led the entire game. He was high man for Boston with 26 points - on 10-of-16 from the field and 3-of-5 on treys.  And he only had ONE turnover. There is a message there.

Clash of the Titans

Talk about an appetizer, that will lead us to Thanksgiving dinner. Bucks vs Celtics! Giannis Vs Tatum! Lillard vs Holiday! This is the premiere matchup of the season up to this date. Both teams are amongst the favorites to win the NBA title. Tonight has all the makings of a classic.    1st Quarter ☘️ JB starts off the game with a JAM! Blew by Giannis and brought the one handed hammer! C's with spectacular ball movement and JB Nails the Three! JT gets in on the action and scores! JB for ANOTHER THREE! BING BANG BOOM! Anyone else love the Zenni commercials with Sam Cassell? I do! JT is straight abusing Kris Middleton. Need to take advantage of that matchup all night. The Greek is here to play, better be ready for his best shot. Derrick White has two threes already! He loves the big moments. C's have a decent lead to this point. C's lead and I have no complaints.  2nd Quarter 🍀🍀 Al Horford is balling! Three for the Jedi Master of the C's. Sam I am is on! Find that man he

Social media daggers directed at Jrue Holiday totally misguided

 The social media daggers thrust at the Celtics Jrue Holiday are well out of line . First of all, here is where he stands in the Celtics stats this season: Minutes: 34.6 MPG - 2nd on team Total rebounds: 7.4 RPG - 2nd Offensive rebounds: 2.1 ORPG -  1st Assists: 5.1 APG -  1st Blocks: 1.0 BPG -  2nd Not bad! Right? This 2021 NBA Champ was: 3-Time All-Defense, first team 2-Time All Defense, 2nd team Recipient of NBA Sportsmanship Award 3-Time Teammate-of-the-Year If minutes count, Holiday may be the 2nd-most-important guy on his team. He has always been a valued assist man , and his rebounding is terrific for a guard , and he leads the team in offensive boards - always a good indicator of a high work ethic. Why am I seeing so much Jrue Holiday hate today? Please make it make sense — Adam Taylor (@AdamTaylorNBA) November 21, 2023 His defensive work has also always been there, and voted three times as Teammate-of-the-Year . Come on! I just don't get the sudden hate on social media

Celtics still get "rattled down the stretch"

 Boston Celtics fans keep seeing it! Their team may be the best in the League, but t hey lose their poise at the end of close games. It happened once again in Boston's  OT loss (121-118) to the Charlotte Hornets . The Green were ahead by 11 points (100-89) at the 6:07 mark of the fourth quarter - and then the misses and miscues followed. Over the next six minutes, Kristaps Porzingis racked up three points, one rebound, one steal and one block - and was quickly yanked in favor of Oshae Brissett . Three seconds later, LaMelo Ball evened the score at 108-108 on a driving layup - assisted by former Celtic, Gordon Hayward . We can only speculate what may have happened if the "Lengthy Latvian" had remained in the game. As good at this Beantown group is, they still get ratted in the clutch , and that won't work in the post-season. The cure? A stabilizing influence (Horford?) and/or a last-second hero (White?) may have helped, but both were out of action. On to the next ga

Charlotte is Buzzing

C's are down both Al Horford and Derrick White tonight. All I know is I can't wait for Wednesday night when it's Celtics Bucks.  1st Quarter ☘️  C's open the scoring first tonight, hopefully that's the start of many. JB with a bit of a post up move and scores. He could develop that part of his game. Posting up is an underutilized aspect to today's basketball. Jrue Holiday with the incredible block on Miller. Miller thought he had an easy one. Jrue was like I DON'T THINK SO! Get that weak crap outta here! C's started out relatively decent but have slowed up a bit. They can't allow the Hornets to hang around, as they did with the Grizz. Z posting up should happen all game. OB out here making plays already. Earning the C's an extra possession. Good news for the C's as PP hits his first shot of the night. It would be nice for him to have a big game tonight. Especially without Al and Derrick. JT with the sweet pass to PP and he hits his second thr

Joe Mazzulla dealing with team's lethargy - complacency doesn't win Titles

 The Boston Celtics may have won versus the Grizzlies on Sunday night, but it never should have been that close. Kristaps Porzingis scored the final four points for Boston - on two free throws and a dunk - in the last minute-and-a-half - and then blocked a final shot attempt by Memphis - to end the game in the Celtics favor, 102-100. Boston may have the top team in the League this season, but a few bad habits persist - such as getting complacent with a lead and letting up on the floor. But coach, Joe Mazzulla , refuses to let his troops ease up on the opposition. Hell, the Grizzlies were without five key players and are in possession of a 3-10 record.  So when the starters were showing signs of lethargy , he yanked three of them (Tatum, Brown, Holiday) - perhaps to cut their minutes in the first game of a back-to-back - but also to send a message. Complacency doesn't win Championships . And it looks like Joe is not going to hold back when he sees a less-than-dedicated work ef

Running - not walking in Memphis

C's are on the road against the Grizz, unfortunately we won't see Marcus Smart. Expect the C's to hopefully run these Grizz right outta the building! 1st Q 🏀 JB opens up the game with a two handed JAM, against the entire Memphis team! Man I love this Celtics press, kudos to Joe and his staff for implementing it. Our backcourt of White and Holiday should be called the Masters of Defense! This duo is the best defensive backcourt in all the league. Z is out here balling, on both ends of the floor. Not sure who got my reference in the title but there should be some! Tonight should be a game the C's win big. If they could grab this game and light up the Grizz they might be able to rest guys in the fourth. Especially with the back to back tomorrow night in Charlotte. Yet to my dismay we trail by one, come on guys wake up. 2nd Q 🏀🏀 C's are firing up plenty of bricks right now. Drive the rock and get inside. Post up JT and let the man do his thing. Pritchard finally gets

In Season Tournament North of the Border

Celtics travel to Toronto for the next leg of the In Season Tournament. We welcome the return of Jaylen Brown and Kristaps Porzingis. We have the backcourt of defense with DWhite and Jrue Holiday. While Jayson Tatum continues his MVP like run.  First Quarter ☘️ This Raptors court is gross! C's offense seems to been left in Philly. The defense is picking up the slack and we are right back in the game. C's are getting hacked like there are no officials out there. JB showing off his passing skills and finds Jrue in the corner for three. Give me more of that! JB has a knack of getting the D to commit to him as he drives, why not kick it out like that. Better than over dribbling or turning it over. What a solid basketball play. Not liking the carelessness with the ball on offense tonight. C's need to pound it inside given the three ball sucks so far. JB just sent S hroders weak layup to the second row! Hauser with the Rainbow three, need to see more of those fall. As I wrote it

Brotherly Love

  Celtics are entering into tonight's matchup without Jaylen Brown and Kristaps Porzingis. Is tonight the night JT stamps his MVP status?! I'm taking bets as to how many times Joel Embid flops out there tonight. I'm going at least five plus. For a big guy, he seems as soft as Charmin. C's tend to be pretty tough against teams on the second night of back to backs. Win incoming? Despite being short handed this will give us insight into who can step up when our big guns are down.  First Quarter ☘️ I know it's early but the defense looks locked in. We have Sam in the starting lineup and he's going to have to deliver tonight. Al Horford on D making Embid look foolish. Al has historically given Embid fits and tonight isn't any different. Al gives it to Embid on the offensive end with the nothing but net jumper. Jrue Holiday owns the post vs other guards. He's built like a fine piece of machinery. Expect him to have a good night on both ends. Personally I want

A too-early intro of Jayson Tatum into Celtics, top10, all-time

  Yes, I know it's too early in the process , but this kid is going to end up on my All-Time Celtics Top-10. Jayson Tatum, if he maintains his present production and play all season, he can't be left off. Let me make this clear (I sound like Joe Biden) , this is my team that would t ake on opponents from the past and present in TODAY's GAME . To start, here are the 7th-season stats for Larry Bird, Jayson Tatum (10 games) and Paul Pierce: BIRD: 25.8 PPG - 9.8 RPG - 6.8 APG - 2.0 SPG - .496 FG - .423 3s TATUM: 28.4 PPG - 8.9 RPG - 3.9 APG - 1.2 SPG - .526 FG - .398 3s PIERCE: 21.6 PPG - 6.6 RPG - 4.2 APG - 1.6 SPG - .455 FG - .370 3s Here's my Top-4 since I remain torn on the 5th starter: Bill Russell (C) Larry Bird (SF) Dennis Johnson (PG) John Havlicek (SG) All three of the following are in the Top-7 . Pick one as a starter. Dave Cowens (PF, C)) Kevin Garnett (PF) Kevin McHale (PF, C) So I need three more . Here they are: JoJo White (PG) Jayson Tatum (SG, SF, PF) Paul

Positive tidbits from Celtics win over a tough Knicks team

 This contest was in doubt through the first three quarters, but the Celtics opened up some breathing room in the final period - to take the game 114-98 . Here are some highpoints : There is a developing synergy between Jrue Holiday and Jayson Tatum . Exhibit A being one early play where Jrue whipped a pass to Jayson under the hoop for a score - bringing back memories of the DJ-to-Bird easy hoops from the mid-80's. Jaylen Brown ended up as team-second in assists with six dimes . His lob pass to Porzingis for the dunk was perfection. Brown is working on his passing game. The Celtics bench remains shallow , but Sam Hauser is shooting lights out lately. He was 4-of-6 from 3-point land for 12 points, and he is a willing board guy (4 last night) and competent defender. If he can do this consistently, his contribution will be critical. Payton Pritchard may be easing out of his slump. He only had five points, but was 2-of-3 from the field and made his sole 3-pointer. He also added t

Porzingis vs His Old Team

  C's coming off wins vs the Nets and Raptors look to kick the Knicks butts tonight. Personally I can't stand the Knicks, the way they prop up Randle and Brunson annoys the fan in me. I'd love to see an all around game from the fellas tonight. We know this Knock team wants to grind. So let's grind em down to nothing. Defense first which will lead to O.  1st Quarter 🏀 Porzingis is nailing threes which is a huge problem for Mitchell Robinson and the Knicks. JB to Z for the Oop! Expect Z to have a pretty good game tonight especially vs his former team. Randles game and shot are U G L Y! JT looking like a smooth jazz song out there. He gets to the rack with such ease. C's need to push the tempo especially since the Knicks are on a back to back. C's need to hit these Knicks in the face because the game is way too close right now. The Celtics D looks stout as they look to retain the lead. JB drops Vincenzo and hammers it home! The crowd is going bananas! They need to

If minutes count, Jrue Holiday may be Celtics 2nd-most-important player

 His stats may not smash you in the face, but his value is undeniable. I am talking about 6'4", do-everything guard, Jrue Holiday. After nine games - and a 7-2 record - Holiday comes in second to Jayson Tatum in minutes at 33.7 MPG . His stats are below: 12.8 MPG - 7.3 RPG - 5.9 APG - 1.1 BPG His points are down from last season when he played for the Bucks. In 2022-23, he logged slightly more minutes (32.6 MPG) that Giannis Antetokounmpo and was second in scoring to The Greek Freak at 19.3 PPG.   "The Jruth", like Dennis Johnson before him, has sacrificed his point production for the good of his present team, the Boston Celtics. And it is working. So if floor time is at least a significant indicator of a player's value, Holiday was much-needed by The Green in their quest for Banner 18. I honestly didn't think Boston had a shot at acquiring him, but Brad Stevens found a way. He seems to have that Red Auerbach/Danny Ainge knack for petty (grand?) theft in

Celtics' support of Mass. bill to prosecute 18-20-yr.-olds as juveniles is ill-advised

  A bill proposed by the Joint Judiciary Committee in Massachusetts would would prosecute offenders between the ages of 18 and 20 years of age as juveniles instead of adults. Here is their logic: Daniel Laplante using the "unformed brain" defense Advocates told lawmakers in the Joint Judiciary Committee that offenders in this age group do not have fully formed brains and cannot completely understand the implications of their actions. "The adult brain, especially the pre-frontal cortex in particular is not fully developed until age 25 and why this is important is because it has implications for a young person's impulse control and self-regulation," said Attorney General Andrea Campbell who testified in favor of the bill. Then why not raise that age limit to 25? Please excuse my sarcasm . I personally have seen the age of violent offenders drop precipitously over the past decades. How about this 6-year-old boy that shot his teacher : 6-year-old boy who shot hi

Raptors invade Boston

C's are coming off a win vs the Nets last night. Can they keep that winning momentum going vs the Raptors? I surely hope so given how well the 76ers are playing.  1st Quarter 🏀 C's are off to a very rocky start tonight. They need to shake the cobwebs off and get going. Toronto looks like they are up for a fight tonight. KP is here to play as well... Leading the C's early in scoring. The Celtics utilize an early timeout to get things right. It's gonna have to start on the defensive end, which should lead to transition offense. Porzingis and Holiday hit back to back shots off the timeout. JBs shot looks very good already tonight. Despite the whistle favoring the Raptors, the C's are fighting hard. JT gets on the board and hopefully that's the start of many. C's lead after one despite having that rocky start.  2nd Quarter ☘️🍀 Al coming off the bench has been so good for this team. In a blink of an eye the C's have a twelve point lead. It's basketball

Celtics bench was the story in 121-107 win over Nets

 The In-Season Tournament seemed to inspire and energize a Celtics bench that wasn't exactly bringing back memories of Bill Walton, Scott Wedman and Jerry Sichting from the mid-80's .  It started with the somewhat-maligned Luke Kornet . He was aggressive while scoring seven points and hauling in nine rebounds - six of which were off the offensive glass . Payton Pritchard had a solid outing that fans were waiting for, with 13 points, five boards (4 offensive) and three assists . He and Luke were fierce on the offensive glass. Then there was Sam Hauser. "The Mauser" was on target , hitting five of his ten 3-point attempts for 15 points. His ability to get his shot off so quickly and hit the trey so consistently really opens up the floor. In all, Boston got 91 minutes, 37 points, 21 rebounds (13 offensive) and five assists from their bench . Not enough can be said for the ability of Pritchard and Kornet to take down offensive rebounds, setting things up for easy hoo

Friday Night at the Garden

  The in season tournament starts for the Celtics tonight vs the Brooklyn Nets. The C's are coming off two straight losses. I don't expect it to be three... Celtics need to get back to work on the defensive end which will lead to their transition offense. JB needs to learn when his shot is off, to hunker down on D. Excel in other areas... 1st Quarter 🏀 Jrue Holiday has a good inside game, catching it down low with the jump hook. His three point shot can be very deadly as well. Good sign if your the Celtics to see JB hit his first shot. JB for three and he's feeling it! The first one was so nice he did it again. The way the ball is leaving his hands is pure. He looks much better than he did in Philly. This reminds me of his first quarter effectiveness last season. OB comes off the bench early, I believe that move is going to pay off. He's a hustle machine as we see him secure an offensive rebound. Kid has that motor that never stops. Celtics defense has been having some

Interesting view from Philly media on Celtics vs. 76'ers

 The 76'ers win over the Celtics tells us that the rivalry is alive . J oel Embiid and Company took over the top spot in the Eastern Conference, and here is what The Philadelphia Inquirer's Keith Pompey , had to say about the two teams. The Celtics have All-NBA wing players in Jayson Tatum and Brown. Derrick White and Jrue Holiday may be the best backcourt in the NBA. Porziņģis has played well, scoring a team-high 29 points on Wednesday. He’ll stretch the floor, forcing opposing centers to cover him away from the basket. That creates space to drive for Tatum and Brown. Boston’s starting five is better, but it doesn’t have a deep bench. That’s something the Celtics may need to address during the course of the season. “I don’t think [this win] is a certain message to us,” (Patrick) Beverley said. “We know exactly who we are. We compete every day. We are deep as [crap]. We are really deep. We know what we have. We’re really deep. So we know what we have. The season is merely 8.5

Time for Tatum's on-court, frustrated gesturing to end

  Bill Russell didn't do it. Larry Bird didn't do it. But Jayson Tatum does it - all the time. When he gets frustrated on the court, his arms-in-the-air gesturing after calls and no-calls has got to stop. The NBA has become a player's League , and it just may be that coach J oe Mazzulla is reluctant to penalize his best player for his actions. I have labeled Jayson as a "transcendent" NBA player , but I have grown tired of his act. Next time it occurs, I would like to see Mazzulla call an immediate timeout and sub someone else in for Tatum. The Duke product is one of the smoothest and skilled players ever to take to he parquet, and he has displayed a more-physical form this season. But he is overly-sensitive to being buffeted and man-handled - and responds as such to the officials. He has earned a reputation as a "whiner" because of it. This kind of frustrated gesturing is not the sign of an on-court leader. We n ever saw much of it in Russ, Larry