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Celtics drop NBA’s preseason opener to Turkish team 97-91

Oct 5, 2012, 6:00 PM EDT

ilkan Karaman, Brandon Bass AP

Don’t read anything into the final score.

Yes, the Celtics dropped their preseason opener 97-91 to Fenerbahce Ulker in Istanbul, Turkey. No, at times it was not really pretty — stretches of weak rebounding, too many turnovers and an offense that had fits and starts — but what do you expect in your first preseason game?

Fenerbahce Ulker looked like a team that had been playing competitive games already — they were more fit, their passing was more crisp, and they played with a sense of urgency. This was a big game for them at home.

And they had Bo McCalebb, one of the best international point guards (an American by birth) slashing into the Celtics defense almost at will. That had to grate on Doc Rivers. Combine him with Romain Sato (the former Xavier player who seemed to hit everything) and the two combined for 45 points.

For Boston, this wasn’t about a win, it was about learning about young players.

Two stood out — Jeff Green and Jared Sullinger. Each had 16 points (Boston’s high). It was great to see Green out on the floor, running and attacking the glass after he had missed a season due to heart surgery. His athleticism off the bench will be a boost for Boston this season (compared to, say, Marquis Daniels in years past). Sullinger continues to show a nose for rebounds and just an ability to score around the basket.

Of the regulars, Rajon Rondo looked best, looking like a leader. He had 13 points and nine assists.

Fenerbahce Ulker led pretty much the entire game, taking advantage of Celtics misses and pushing the pace before the Celtics could set their defense. In addition, the kind of off-the-ball movement and backdoor cuts European teams do out of habit made this a tough first preseason game for the Celtics. This was not an opponent who fell into Boston’s comfort zone.

So don’t read much into it. It looked like a first preseason game.

  1. lakerluver - Oct 5, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    Hmmm, maybe my prediction of LAKERS v. Celtics for the title was a little premature.

    • passerby23 - Oct 5, 2012 at 8:58 PM

      After a single preseason game where guys aren’t in shape and don’t know the playbook, where teams are playing an assortment of players, coaches don’t have lineups and rotations down, and the other team has nothing to lose playing in front of a home crowd? Yeah, I guess the Celtics are done.

  2. paulhargis53 - Oct 5, 2012 at 7:45 PM

    lakerluver, if anyone knows anything about premature, it would be you.
    At least that’s what all the fellas you’ve been with have said.

  3. manotas211 - Oct 5, 2012 at 7:46 PM

    Wow. Can’t even beat these chumps and they are talking about a championship. Hahaha. Good luck against the elite teams. Celtics suck.

    • hehateme2 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:32 PM


  4. stadix093 - Oct 5, 2012 at 8:03 PM

    As a shameless Laker fan this makes me laugh. As an NBA fan I know this means nothing, the Celtics will still be a damn good team and it is way too early to say anyone s a favorite to make it to the championship game besides the two teams that were just there. Having said that, I will be walking around talking trash while I can. Hahaha Boston, thanks for the good times today.

    • yomarianob - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:05 PM

      They are the only team this year to force a Game 7 with the Heat..

  5. rodge1 - Oct 5, 2012 at 8:33 PM

    All I can do is laugh at the Celtic fans that get offended when they’re not considered championship contenders.

  6. paulhargis53 - Oct 5, 2012 at 8:38 PM

    All I can do is laugh when turd fans of the heat and Lakers act like its a forgone conclusion that their teams are playing for the title.

    • hehateme2 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:33 PM

      celticks are all blowhards…. like paul here.

      • jimeejohnson - Oct 6, 2012 at 12:19 PM

        paul’s actually smart for a 4th grader! Just kidding: his problem is Hater’s disease.

    • pantsfreezone - Oct 6, 2012 at 2:33 AM

      I agree. It will be the Heat and Thunder again for the hardware.

  7. money2long - Oct 5, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    just some slight critiquing on this article…um i can see why it would be okay to do, but adding the point total in the title sorta ruined the game for me, only because i’m watching it now. it’s partly my fault for even checking a basketball site while engaged in a previously recorded game, but it was during commercial break and now i’m questioning if i should even finish watching since i know the point total. well, i already knew who won, but i wanted to find out by how much by watching the game. since i know the final score i can unwillingly gauge in my head how the rest of the game’s scoring will go. and now that makes it boring.

    i think had you left out the final score in the title and just stopped at ‘celtics lose..preseason opener’, that sorta woulda drew people in to find out if they got blown out, was it on a buzzer beater, was it a decent take away the assumption part of how bad the loss was or how close it was by stating the outcome in the title.

    i dunno. i could be the only one who thinks this way. completely okay to do add it however. i’m just speaking from my perspective, the one of someone watching the game at the moment.

    as for the game…that sucks! that’s a bad look. but it’s just one lousy game. the importance of the game was to get a feel against competition that you don’t see everyday in practice, have in game footage to dissect and just giving the younger guys a chance to get some work in. also this is a chemistry test for the coaching staff. see how certain guys play with others on their team and which combos work. the outcome is important to some extent. but that’s not what we should be putting the most emphasis on. these games are to build consistency as the regular season approaches.

    celtics will be fine.

  8. rodge1 - Oct 5, 2012 at 8:43 PM

    Although some Laker fans are equally as funny. Some of them believe the Lakers using only 5 players since they have no bench (spare me the Jamison nonsense) can get past OKC.

    • passerby23 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:03 PM

      I’m no Lakers fan, but Jamison, Hill, Blake, Meeks, Duhon, and Ebanks isn’t that bad of a bench. I think Earl Clark could contribute a bit too. If you leave, say, Dwight Howard in with the second unit, you’ve got a go-to scorer while the other starters rest. I don’t think the Lakers bench is scaring anyone, but I don’t think it’s nearly as bad as in recent years. I would love nothing more than for OKC to hand it to them, but I think the Lakers are the favorite at this point.

    • money2long - Oct 6, 2012 at 10:34 AM

      jamison is nonsense now lolol. wow, only informed bball players understand what guys bring to the table. stop looking at nba 2k stats or his age. jamison can still play. so sad when haters let their emotions cloud their judgment.

      • kavika6 - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:52 PM

        Too bad. I used to like Jamison. Even when the U of A beat him in the national championship.

    • cosanostra71 - Oct 6, 2012 at 1:06 PM

      Duhon, Blake, Meeks, Jamison, Clark… all former starters.

  9. rodge1 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:02 PM

    I am the turd Heat fan that stated Dallas was best team 2 years ago while you talked loads of crap about Boston being better. I stated last year that Miami would play OKC in finals while you talked crap about Boston being better… Wait… Let me guess… It was the refs fault your team didn’t win.

    • passerby23 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:05 PM

      I give props where props is due. What is your prediction for this year?

  10. yomarianob - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:06 PM

    They’ ve added JT and Courtney Lee, with the comeback of a great player in Jeff Green and some interesting rookies.. in exchange of Ray Allen.. They clearly can be the Champions..

  11. paulhargis53 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:24 PM

    That’s right, you are a turd heat fan. Everything else you said is unprovable gobbledygook.

    At least we agree you’re a turd fan…

    P.S. I have never blamed the refs, but with a name like rodge1 something tells me you were crying about the Seattle game.

    • hehateme2 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:34 PM

      sounds like a whiner too. Go find another hobby loser

  12. imthatbitch19 - Oct 5, 2012 at 9:43 PM

    Bo McCalebb should play in NBA!

  13. deiong - Oct 5, 2012 at 10:43 PM

    haha to funny. wonder if any other “contenders” would win??

  14. j0esixpack - Oct 5, 2012 at 11:42 PM

    Al Gore just said they were obviously just lethargic from all the tryptophan in Turkey.

    • southbeachtalent - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:40 AM


      • j0esixpack - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:57 PM

        That went over everyone’s head but you and I.

  15. misterdreamer119 - Oct 6, 2012 at 12:49 AM

    Lakerluver just nutted his drawers while looking at a picture of dwight howards face.

    • bozosforall - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:12 AM

      Dwight Howard just nutted misterdreamer119’s face. And he is begging for more…along with paulhandjob53.

  16. rodge1 - Oct 6, 2012 at 1:18 AM


    Not sure what my name has to do with a Seattle game. But that was a nice attempt to divert the attention away from your Celtics not being contenders. I certainly don’t need to prove that.

    • giselleisasucubus - Oct 6, 2012 at 12:11 PM

      Hey “rodge”, so the Celtics lose a PRESEASON opener to the best pro team in Europe and now their not contenders? So when the Lakers or Heat lose to the Bobcats in the exhibition games, that means they aren’t contenders either? You’re an idiot, learn the game. BTW- Boston IS clearly a contender & they WILL give Miami major problems.

      • hehateme2 - Oct 6, 2012 at 1:48 PM

        keep dreaming there giselle. You should have learned by now to say away from sports talk.
        You just don’t have the skill.

  17. progress2011 - Oct 6, 2012 at 1:50 AM

    I heard the celtic skirts, lost to an Istanbul WNBA team ?

    • jimeejohnson - Oct 6, 2012 at 12:24 PM

      All this disrespect for the Celtics, a team that surpassed all expectations last season and would have played for a championship if not for one Lebron James. The jealousy and envy of Celtics haters is pathetic yet amusing. Thanks.

      • Kurt Helin - Oct 7, 2012 at 11:39 AM

        I think the issue going forward is that LeBron is still there.

  18. giselleisasucubus - Oct 6, 2012 at 12:12 PM

    progress, change your name to sexist regression. You realize your name is an oxymoron, correct?

    • progress2011 - Oct 8, 2012 at 6:05 PM

      sucubus…..AHAHAHAHAHA !!!

      R U REALLY gonna reference another posters screen-name! C’mon ……REALLY !

      Lady, I’m not alseep…you can’t take advantage of me ! I gotta get paid to service women like you ! ahahahaha

  19. lakerluver - Oct 6, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    Another homophobic nut job, huh? Darn, ph53IQ was bad enough!!…. Dude, your username says it all: mister dreamer? Sounds like you do a lot of dreaming about misters to me. You and old ph530lbs would make a good couple.

  20. dysraw1 - Oct 6, 2012 at 2:22 PM

    that game and all the other preseason game are just to get a look at players, to make anything more of the outcome is ignorant

    • kavika6 - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:01 PM

      What about U.S. pride? Even if it’s only a preseason game they should have made the effort to win. Although there obviously are many foreign players in the NBA it’s an American team in the best league in the world. This loss should be disgraceful to any NBA team or fan.

      • phaden27 - Oct 12, 2012 at 1:55 AM

        The Olympics were over months ago pal, put the ugly American away for a few years.

  21. paulhargis53 - Oct 6, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    lakerluver, I’m glad to see I am still in your head. I have few pointers for you.

    1. If you’re going to complain about a poster using certain types of references regarding you, it may be a good idea to not use the same type of reference back.
    2. If you are going to attempt humor, make sure you are being funny. You once again look like a fool.
    Why are you so cranky? Did Kobe tell you to bite the pillow,he’s going in dry?

  22. paulhargis53 - Oct 6, 2012 at 4:15 PM

    hehateme: nice screen name. That tells me everything I need to know about you.
    What a freakin loser.
    Rodge: I wasn’t “trying to divert” anything.
    I asked you a simple question.

    You saying the Celtics aren’t contenders is laughable. You do realize they took the Heat to the 7th game of the ECF, right?
    They improved the team from last year and most people are picking them 2-3 seed this year, right?
    But some felcher on the the internet with the oh so cute nickname of “Rodge’ knows better. Give me a break.
    I’ll let you get back to your game of Tummysticks with he hate me now.

  23. imforbigblue - Oct 6, 2012 at 9:57 PM

    LOL…KG talking about how there the best yet they cant beat a scrub over seas team. Good luck on beating out Miami

  24. rodge1 - Oct 7, 2012 at 12:10 AM

    So angry!… And I don’t even want to know what Tummysticks is. That was way too specific, maybe a shrink can help you get over that.
    Boston could be a contender if LeBron or Bosh suffer serious injuries or Fab Melo & Sullinger make huge contributions. Otherwise, not yet. Thats no reason to cry and call people names.

  25. paulhargis53 - Oct 7, 2012 at 1:46 AM

    Who’s angry? I’m actually laughing at the ignorance of your postings.

    Everyone and their brother calls the Celtics contenders, besides you.

    You know damn well what Tummysticks is, you play it on a nightly basis.

    I remember you know. You were on pro football talk. you were on there making the IQ of the comment sections go down.
    Huge Saints fan~ don’t see you commenting too much there…

    Face it, you’re a dope, I know it and you know it.

    • bozosforall - Oct 10, 2012 at 1:19 AM

      Sounds like the only ones, here or elsewhere, who know what “tummysticks” is are you and your fellow New England rump rangers…figures given the fact that the vast majority of Boston men are closeted h0m0s.

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