Written by Ken Levinsky
The Maine Red Claws (16-21), who have edged to within four and a half games of a playoff spot, finish their five-game home stand at 1 p.m. on Sunday against the first-place Fort Wayne Red Ants (23-14).
The third place Red Claws are 7 games behind Fort Wayne and six and a half games behind second-place Canton in the six-team Eastern Division. Each of the three division winners in the 17-team league and five "wildcards," teams with the next best records regardless of division, will qualify for the playoffs.
The Red Claws final 11 contests include six road games and five home games. After Sunday's tilt, the next two home games are on Sundays March 16 and 23.
Frank Gaines, the Maine Red Claws 6-foot, 3-inch rookie guard from Indiana Perdue Fort Wayne has the team lead in scoring with an average of 20.1 points per game. The undrafted Gaines, who played high school ball in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, has made an impressive 41.6 percent of his three-point shots.
Veteran 6-foot, 8-inch forward Chris Wright, second on the team with a 19.5-point average, was Maine's only representative in the D League's recent all-star game in New Orleans.
Big man Daniel Orton, who leads the team with 1.93 blocks per game, is averaging 8.8 points and seven rebounds in 23.6 minutes per game. Orton (6-10, 255) was the 29th pick in the 2010 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic. In 51 NBA games (Orlando, Oklahoma City and Philadelphia) over three seasons, Orton holds career averages of 2.8 points and 2.5 rebounds in 10.6 minutes per game. This season the Kentucky product appeared in 22 games (four starts) with the Philadelphia 76ers, averaging 3.0 points and 2.8 rebounds
Damen Bell-Holter, the 6-foot, 9-inch rookie from Oral Roberts, is averaging 7.5 points and 4.5 rebounds in only 17.1 minutes per game.
The 2013-14 season marks the fifth season that the Celtics have used the Maine Red Claws as their NBA Development League affiliate and the second under a hybrid affiliation, in which Boston is Maine's sole NBA affiliate and has full control over the team's basketball operations. Red Claws Head Coach Mike Taylor is also in his second year with the team.
Radio broadcasts of each game can be heard live on WJJB 96.3 FM with Chris Sedenka (play by play) and Rick Simonds (analysis) calling the action. Sedenka, a 1999 Gorham High graduate, is co-host of the PM JAB sports talk show, heard from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays on 96.3 FM. Simonds was a very successful basketball coach at St. Josephs College, winning 11 conference titles in 23 years.
Maine Red Claws
Yearly Win/Loss Record
2010 27-23 missed playoffs
2011 18-32 missed playoffs
2012 21-29 missed playoffs
2013 26-24 Playoffs: lost in first round
2014 16-21 (as of March 5)
Last Updated on Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
Written by Staff Report
The Portland Pirates hockey organization announced a restructuring of the management team effective immediately, which Portland Pirates majority owner Ron Cain called "a new era of Portland Pirates Hockey."
Cain will assume the position of Managing Partner/CEO of the Portland Pirates while current CEO Brian Petrovek becomes President, Business Development and continues in his role as AHL Alternate Governor, a Pirates press release explained. Joining Cain and Petrovek will be Portland Pirates Hall of Famer and current Vice President of LEGACY Global Sports, Brad Church, who will become the Portland Pirates' Chief Operating Officer and AHL Alternate Governor. Lyman Bullard will remain the Pirates' Chairman and AHL Governor.
Under the new corporate structure, all revenue generation and new business development of the Portland Pirates will be managed by Petrovek, including commercial rights/sponsorship sales, ticket sales, events and broadcast properties. Sponsorship sales and servicing will be managed in partnership with Shamrock Sports and Entertainment.
Church will manage the Portland Pirates' day-to-day activities, including oversight of the Pirates communications, administration, merchandise, and finance departments as well as hockey operations and team services. Church's role will include oversight of the Pirates' community relations, game day presentation, and brand management and serve as the "face" of Pirates hockey throughout the community, the press release explained.
"This management reorganization represents an important step in the company's renewed focus on strengthening relationships with customers, growing revenues across the board, and in retooling our brand locally with our fans," said Cain, who became majority owner of the Pirates on Dec. 10, 2013. He spearheaded a new five-year lease with the Cumberland County Civic Center.
"Expanding our executive team with the addition of Brad Church, a former Pirates captain and Hall of Famer, is an expression of the commitment I made to the business and to the community when I recently became majority owner," Cain said. "Brian, Brad and I are looking forward to working closely together and beginning a new era of Portland Pirates Hockey throughout the region."
Last Updated on Friday, 28 February 2014 01:30
Written by Ken Levinsky
Frank Gaines, the Maine Red Claws' quick 6-foot, 3-inch rookie guard from Indiana Perdue Fort Wayne has taken over the team lead in scoring with an average of 20.1 points per game. The undrafted Gaines, who played high school ball in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., has made an impressive 41.2 percent of his three-point shots.
Veteran 6-foot, 8-inch forward Chris Wright, now second on the team with a 19.5-point average, was Maine's only representative in the D League's recent all-star game in New Orleans.
Versatile 6-foot, 5-inch rookie guard Chris Babb (11.9 ppg), is the team leader in minutes (37.5) and three-point shots made, and near the top in rebounds (6.1), assists (3.3) and steals.
Damen Bell-Holter, the 6-foot, 9-inch rookie from Oral Roberts, is averaging 7.4 points and 4.6 rebounds in only 17.4 minutes per game.
Maine (14-20), returning from a rough five-game road trip in which they went 1-4, will play at home this weekend at 7 p.m. on Friday against the first-place Canton Charge (22-13) and at 4 p.m. on Sunday against the Austin Toros (14-20).
The third place Red Claws have dropped to seven and a half games behind Canton and six and a half games behind second-place Fort Wayne in the six-team Eastern Division. Each of the three division winners in the 17-team league and five "wildcards," teams with the next best records regardless of division, will qualify for the playoffs. At this point, Maine is five and a half games out of a playoff spot.
Last Updated on Thursday, 27 February 2014 21:24
Written by Staff Report
The International Mountain Climbing School, with Ikon KiteboardingUSA and Kiteboard New England, will host the second annual Mount Washington Snowkite Festival on Saturday, March 1 and Sunday, March 2, from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Omni Mount Washington Resort in Bretton Woods, N.H.
This kite event is for all people interested in kiteboarding on snow, land, or water regardless of previous kite flying, ski or board experience, organizers said. Participants can enjoy free educational lessons, snowkite demos and other kite-related activities, including a charitable raffle on Saturday, March 1 at 5 p.m. It will be held Saturday evening at 5 p.m. in the Nordic Ski Lodge and will benefit CFF.org (Great Strides). Prizes include a one-night stay at Omni Mount Washington Resort, gift certificates from local businesses and kite equipment.
The Mount Washington Snowkite Festival will be held on the golf course grounds at Omni Mount Washington Resort and is not wind dependent. No matter what the weather brings, participants will enjoy all aspects of kite sports, organizers said.
The event website warns, "The snow is going to be deep! If you get stuck wind please prepare for a nice long hike back. ... Bring snowshoes, skins for 'at' gear, telemark gear, split boards, etc. if you have them. Bring a back pack with the basics; water, food, sun glasses, sun screen, etc." The organizers add, "The Snowkite event will take place regardless of conditions however, for those who arrive and stay, there will be activities to partake in." For more information, visit the website at www.kitefreeordie.net.
Last Updated on Friday, 21 February 2014 00:21