Steve Pagliuca Rumors
Pagliuca said Stevens voiced his love for the team and its extensive basketball history, as well as his confidence that he could make a difference for the organization. But there was also a specific stipulation should he accept the job. “The one thing he wouldn’t do going forward was try to lose a game, or you know, ‘tank,’” Pagliuca said. “So if we were going to have a strategy, maybe like ‘The Process,’ he was not going to participate in that.”
The Celtics were trying hard to keep Doc Rivers in 2013, but Brad Stevens has worked out better than even Doc might have with a constantly changing roster. “Well, listen, when I hired Brad, I believed he would be a very good NBA coach,” Danny Ainge said. “I certainly didn’t know it, because he had never coached in the NBA, but I knew he was a great person, and I knew he was smart, and I knew he had a great work ethic. And that’s a great place to start, and that often times leads to success. “You know, Brad was an outstanding move, yeah. He’s a joy to work with. I think that not only is he fun for me to work with, he’s fun for everybody to work with. I think he’s someone that respects every person in the organization, from the lowest-level people all the way up to Wyc and Pags (part-owners Wyc Grousbeck and Steve Pagliuca). I think he has relationships with everybody in the entire organization. And that makes my job easier, because so much of my job is managing people, and when there’s conflict, it just makes my job harder. So having a guy like Brad around makes my job easier, and I can focus on more important things.”
Krzyzewski is friends with Celtics coach Brad Stevens and team co-owner Steve Pagliuca, whose sons Joe and Nick played for Krzyzewski as walk-ons at Duke. After the massive August trade that sent Irving to Boston, Krzyzewski reached out to the Celtics. “You’re going to see more from him than you ever saw in Cleveland,” he told them. “His passing,” Krzyzewski said. “A lot of people just started labeling him as a scorer. And I told the Celtics, ‘This kid is unbelievable in ball screens, and he can pass the ball.’ And I think you’ve already seen that, and that’ll only get better.”
“He is a very smart, cerebral person. He is very mature, even for 25, he is very mature,” said Celtics co-owner Steve Pagliuca, following Irving’s introductory news conference Sept. 1. “He really wants to maximize his abilities. He is a hard worker in basketball. He is a hard worker in life. I would say he is kind of a renaissance man. It’s going to be very exciting to have him around here.”
Robb: You’re a Duke guy and Kyrie Irving is coming in. How exciting is that for you? Steve Pagliuca: It’s very exciting. He’s a great player. We lost a couple of great players as well. As Danny (Ainge) said, it was an emotional day for us yesterday because Isaiah is a great player and Crowder is a great player. We love those guys, but Kyrie is a very special athlete and a great person. I know him personally from Duke.