NBA News and Rumors – October 5, 2009

Celtics’ Ray Allen tunes out extension talk

T-Mac feeling good at practice

Utah Jazz: Boozer is ‘happy to be here’

Celtics’ Ray Allen tunes out extension talk

Steve Bulpett

Ray Allen insists he’s living in the moment. So if the possibility of being a free agent seems a season away to him, it’s only because, well, it is.

At 34, the Celtics guard is making certain to cherish the present.

“It’s interesting how I approach training camp as an older man in relation to my career,” Allen said. “I think Kevin (Garnett) takes the same mindset and Paul (Pierce) has the same mindset. We get in here and it’s like you’re on borrowed time. We’ve all done this a long time and we really enjoy this more now than we ever did. Being able to be here and compete for what this team is playing for, that’s pretty special.”

And that’s why, though Allen would prefer to get a contract extension signed as soon as possible, he’s not going to let that desire get in his or his team’s way.

“Naturally you have thoughts, but you just stay focused on what you have to do each day,” Allen said. “Everyone has thoughts about security and your kids’ future. You think about how you’re going to live in 10 years or whatever, but it’s the present that you’ve got to take care of.

T-Mac feeling good at practice


The court was dropped down in the middle of the McAllen Convention Center, a makeshift training camp venue far removed in so many ways from the arenas and tests of the NBA to come. But it was a start.

Perhaps the setting was fitting, a reminder of how far Tracy McGrady must go. But for the first time since microfracture surgery last spring, McGrady, 30, practiced with the Rockets on Sunday. He went through a few stints of the scrimmage, moving well and without pain in a small, but significant step in his comeback.

His first participation in training camp did not alter his schedule. General manager Daryl Morey said it was “part of the process.” The Rockets expect McGrady to be out at least until an MRI scheduled for Nov. 23. Still, he played and all reports were that he played well.

“He looked good, real good,” forward Trevor Ariza said. “He was real poised, real confident. He may be a ways away, but I think he looked good.”

McGrady was less enthusiastic. He had been going through occasional five-on-five workouts in Chicago, though the Rockets were more encouraged by his energy and intensity Sunday than in those workouts. But McGrady seemed to have the steps to be taken, rather than made, in mind.

“It’s another steppingstone toward making progress and trying to get back on the basketball court,” he said. “I’m feeling pretty good. We just have to take our time on it.

“We’ll see how I feel tomorrow and talk about it with the trainers and see what they want me to do. This is what I expected, to take caution, come out one step at a time and gradually ease my way back in to it. This is the first time I went up and down with the team. I still have a lot of work to do.”

Utah Jazz: Boozer is ‘happy to be here’

Jody Genessy

A national sports writer visited Utah last week to do a feature on what he described as "the awkward relationship between (Carlos) Boozer and the Jazz these days."

The lengthy article by Yahoo! Sports’ Marc J. Spears gave a wider audience an interesting overview of the ongoing saga — from the infamous raise comment to the offseason trade ordeal.

Boozer also revealed to him why he didn’t attend the viewing and funeral for the late Larry H. Miller after the Jazz owner passed away in February.

Other teammates didn’t attend, but Boozer’s absence in particular, team sources told Spears, "raised the eyebrow of some in the organization."

Boozer explained his reasoning.

"Funerals are a tough thing to go through. After I saw (Miller) in the hospital, I wanted to remember him how I just saw him last. Confident. Happy. Not happy-happy, but happy enough to give us some words of wisdom for the rest of our season," Boozer said.

"That’s how I want to remember him. I didn’t want to go to his wake and see his body lying there. I didn’t want to go to his funeral, where it would be sad. I wanted to remember Larry as Larry, as a fiery competitor — happy, emotional, a leader."

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