GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

December 26, 2012

Crunch Time


Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Much needed win

Tuesday’s Christmas Day shellacking of the Brooklyn Nets is proof positive that there is no need to panic when it comes to the Celtics mediocre start to the season.

Sure the Celtics have looked downright bad at times and a 14-13 record through 27 games leaves much to be desired. But this team has looked mediocre in the regular season each of the last three season, only to flip that switch in the playoffs and look great.

Tuesday’s game was a perfect example of how the Celtics can flip the switch. Playing on national television against a hungry Nets team that sports two wins over the Celtics this season, Boston came out and took it to them for 48 minutes, rebounding, defending and hitting shots. When the stakes are at their highest the Celtics are at their best and I expect nothing less this spring.

Bullpen Upgrade

It’s looking like hulking relief pitcher Joel Hanrahan is on his way to Boston via trade from Pittsburgh. Much has been made about the Sox lack of a splash this offseason, but Ben Cherington has quietly put together a sneaky good bullpen.

Hanrahan can handle the late innings, as can a healthy Andrew Bailey. Combine that with the signing of the underrated Koji Uehara and the Sox are going to be tough to beat late in games.

Cunningham returns

Patriots defensive lineman Jermaine Cunningham is eligible to return to the Patriots after serving a four game suspension after testing positive for performance enhancing drugs (Cunningham predictably claims it was adderall).

The Patriots have received a one week roster exemption for his spot and are expected to activate the defensive lineman this week.

-Compiled by Nick Curcuru