Big changes are happening in and around the Boston Celtics organization. Starting with Danny Ainge’s departure and Brad Stevens’ surprising ascent to the role of team president, it feels as though a new era is coming swiftly in Beantown.
Out is Stevens as head coach, replacing him is first-time headman Ime Udoka; a slew of new assistant coaches could be joining him, too. Also — gone is floor general Kemba Walker, in are Al Horford and Moses Brown.
However, not everything is changing for the Celtics. In particular, Horford’s return to Boston after a two-year walkabout shows that there’s something to be said for continuity.
As it happens, continuity is exactly what Celtics fans will be getting from a color commentary perspective on the team’s game broadcasts. Per an announcement on Friday, a popular former Cs player will continue to sit in the broadcast booth for the foreseeable future.
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The White Mamba’s Microphone Venom Prevails
As revealed via press release by NBC Sports Boston, Brian Scalabrine has re-upped with the network. As a result, he will remain in place as the lead television analyst for Celtics games by way of a new, multi-year contract.
Scalabrine has been part of the Celtics’ announcing team since the 2015-16 NBA season. He moved to the seat next to longtime play-by-play man Mike Gorman on a full-time basis for the 2020-21 campaign following the death of Celtics legend Tommy Heinsohn.
“Brian’s knowledge and passion for the Celtics and NBA adds great value to our game productions and Celtics-related content across all of the NBC Sports Boston platforms,” said Kevin Miller, NBC Sports Boston’s vice president of content creation and strategy. “We’re excited to have Scal remain on our team for years to come.”
It was noted in the release that Scalabrine will also continue to contribute to Celtics Pregame Live & Postgame Live and Celtics Post-Up, as well as other content across the network’s various broadcast and digital platforms.
Scalabrine’s inimitable style is perhaps best represented by the essay he penned announcing his transition to broadcasting in 2014. As noted by Bleacher Report, it was a pitch-perfect parody of the piece LeBron James penned to announce his own return to the Cleveland Cavaliers earlier that summer.
Scalabrine’s Playing Career and Celtics History
After starring for the USC Trojans for three years from 1998 to 2001, during which he netted All Pac-10 First Team honors, Scalabrine was selected 35th overall by the then-New Jersey Nets in the 2001 NBA Draft.
He would play for the Jason Kidd-led Nets for four seasons before making the move to Boston in 2005 via free agency. Although the nickname came later, it was there that his “White Mamba” legend truly began to grow.
Over five seasons with the Celtics from ’05 to 2010, Scalabrine appeared in 264 games, averaging 2.7 points and 1.5 rebounds per contest. He also connected on 36.8% of his three-point attempts as a power forward, which was far less common in those days.
He captured a ring with the Celtics in 2008.
Scalabrine went on to retire at age 34 after two more seasons with the Chicago Bulls. He also played in Italy during the NBA lockout in 2011.