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Bent's Christmas Carol

Scene: It is Christmas Eve.  Outside, the snow falls and as the clock nears 5:00 p.m., Doc and Danny are putting the finishing touches to their working day.

Doc: Gee, I can't wait to get back to my family for the holidays.

Danny: Well, don't forget, I need you here tomorrow evening to go over our plans for the Sacramento game.

Doc: Are you sure?  Every time we meet to discuss the team, you and Tom Thibodeau go over the gameplan and I just end up doing your ironing or something.

Danny: *Carries a big pile of clothes out to the back room*  Look, just be here, OK?

Doc: Yes, sir.  *Whispers under his breath*  Self important slave-driver!

Danny: What did you say?

Doc: Umm, I said that Greg Louganis was a good diver. 

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Danny: Oh.  Yes, he sure was.

Doc: Well, it's gone past five now.  Can I go home?

Danny: Yes, I suppose so.

Doc: Oh, thank you, sir.  Merry Christmas!

Danny: Meh.

Danny puts his papers back into a filing cabinet and locks up the office.  As he walks down the street, he mutters under his breath about his hatred for the festive period and grumpily pounds off into the distance.

Scene: Danny arrives back at home.  His family are back in Utah for the Holidays, but Danny still has work to do.  As he opens the front door, he initially thought he heard a ghostly voice saying his name, but decided he must be imagining things.  He goes up the steps into his cold, dark and lonely one-bedroom flat and makes himself a cup of tea.  As he sits down to drink his tea, a ghostly apparition appears before him.

Ghostly Apparition: I am a ghostly apparition.

Danny: Hey, I know you - you're Jacob Majerle.

Jacob Marjerle - Actually it's "Thunder" Dan Majerle.

Danny: Right, I remember now.  My former business partner.

Thunder Dan: Teammate?  You mean teammate, right?

Danny: Yeah, sorry.  That was a long while ago.  What the heck are you doing here?

Thunder Dan: Oh yeah, right.  Umm, I have to tell you that you are going to be visited by three spirits tonight.

Danny: Well, they'd better not be here between 9 and 10, because I'm watching CSI:Utah tonight.

Thunder Dan fades away as if he was never there.  A bit like the last five years of his career.

Vin Baker: Did someone say "free spirits"?

Danny: Get out of here, Vin!

Scene: The end credits to "CSI:Utah" roll as Danny flips off the TV.

Danny: I never would have guessed that ending.  *Yawns*  Time for bed, I think.

As soon as his head touches the pillow, another ghostly apparition appears.

Ghostly Apparition: I am a ghostly apparition.

Danny: Tommy...have you been taking the wrong medication again?  Listen, let me book you a cab back to Causeway Street.  *Picks up phone*

Tommy: No!  I am the ghost of Celtics past.  *The phone flies out of Danny hand and smashes into the wall*

Danny: Oh, man - how am I going to field daily calls from Isiah Thomas offering me a combination of players and picks I don't want for a collection of players I don't want to give up now?.  On second thoughts, thanks!

Tommy: I'm going to take you back to the past...

A big cloud of smoke appears.

Danny: Chief?  Is that you?

Not Chief: No.  Absolutely not.

Danny: Look, I know how this works.  You take me back to a time when I was younger, more innocent and nicer to my colleagues and I'm supposed to feel guilty and start being nice to everyone again.  Well it won't work!

Tommy: You're kidding right?  Back in the day, you were even more whiny and irritating than you are now.  This isn't about you, son.  This is about the Celtics.

Scene: As the smoke clears, Danny and Tommy find themselves back in 2002.  A long three rebounds over the head of Walter McCarty to Jason Kidd, who throws it ahead for another easy lay-up, as New Jersey opens up a thirty point lead and the crowd is silent.

Tommy: Remember this time, Danny?

Danny: Of course.  This was when I took over.  Hang on a minute, where did you get that Red book?

Tommy: I got if from  "Let me tell you a story".  It's very good.  Anyway, do you recognize this voice?

Voice: Oompa Loompa Doopity Bryan Doo.  Threes are worth more so why shoot a two?  Oompa Loompa Doopity Dee Brown.  Life's much more fun when you gun from downtown!

Danny: Uhh, is it one of the Oompa-Loompa's from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory?

Tommy: That's right - it's Jim O'Brien!

Jim O'Brien: Remember the time you used to criticize the way my teams played?

Danny: I don't get this - am I supposed to regret this period of my life or what?

Tommy: Run!  Run!  Run!

Danny: Huh?  Are we in danger?

Tony Battie: Oh, don't worry, he says that all the time.  It just means he's watching the horses on his handheld TV again.

Danny: Oh, right.  Hey, what's with the long black-haired wig, red plastic-rimmed spectacles and retainer?

Tony Battie: Didn't Thunder Dan tell you?  We're all in fancy dress today to celebrate the festive season.  I'm "Ugly Battie".

Danny: Riiight.  That makes about as much sense as anything else that has happened today.

Ugly Battie: Thanks!

With that, another cloud of smoke appears and before he knows it, Danny is back in bed.

Ghostly Apparition: I am a ghostly apparition.

Danny: You're Kevin Garnett!

L'il Penny: Kevin Garnett?

Kevin Garnett: I'm not, I'm the Ultimate Warrior.

Danny: Shouldn't you be the ghost of Celtics present?

The Ultimate Warrior: Well, yeah, that too, but I *am* the Ultimate Warrior.  Fred McLeod said so when we played the Cavs.

Danny: Should I even know who that is?  Look, I dig the face paint, but where are your tassles?

The Ultimate Warrior: Oh, I had to lend those to Scal for some reason.  He said he's working nights over the festive period.

Danny: Get on with it then, I'm sure you have some kind of message for me.

The Ultimate Warrior: And the people will be telling their children that when the Warrior wreaks terror on the NBA, he will carry his family on his back and attack with a relentlessness never before seen.  *Snorts*  And yet the planet has not yet seen how the Warrior will tear apart the flesh of his opponents and rip into the heart and soul of the rest of the league.  *Turns his back*  And when the Warrior leads his family to victory the world will turn on their televisions and watch images of themselves as they bow down to their new king.  Raaaahhh!  Ubuntuuuuuu!

Danny: I must admit, we do have a pretty decent roster.

A sudden flash of light transports them to a raucous TD Banknorth Garden, where the rabid crowd is getting behind the Celtics as they put a beating on the Lakers.

Danny: Ah, Rajon, let me are E.T., right?

Rajon Rondo: Meep Meep.

Danny: I guess not.

R.R. runs over a pile of leaves and goes and eats some birdseed.  Just behind him, Wile E. Kobe pops out from behind a rock, scratches his head and then walks gingerly across the leaves, which leads him to fall into his own trap and he gets blown up by several sticks of ACME dynamite.

The Ultimate Warrior: Watch out, here comes Tony Allen swinging past on a vine, while wearing just a loin cloth.

Tony Allen swings past on a vine, while wearing just a loin cloth.

T.A.-zan: Aaaahh-oooo-aaagghh-oooo-aaaggh.

The Ultimate Warrior: Uh-oh, there goes his knee again.

Danny: Who put this cast together?

The Ultimate Warrior: Isiah Thomas did it for us.

Danny: That explains a lot.

Wile E. Kobe staggers past with his face covered in soot.


Danny: Is that Jim O'Brien again?

Ray Allen: I am Deadly Ray!  *Destroys Wile E. Kobe with a deadly ray*.


Danny: Yep, I guess we are pretty dominant right now.  Wait, don't go!  I don't understand what this all means.

Danny is too late, as the scene fades and he finds himself back in bed again.

Danny: I'm actually looking forward to seeing the ghost of Celtics future now.

Ghostly Apparition: I am a ghostly apparition.

Danny: Wow.  Are you Bill Belichick?

Ghostly Apparition: *Removes hood*  No, it's me...Gerald Green.  I'm supposed to be the grim reaper.

Danny: Heh, more like the dim leaper.

Gerald Green: That's not fair.  I am the ghost of Celtics yet to come.

Danny: I hardly feel you are the guy to represent the future any more, but I suppose someone has to do it.

Gerald Green: Let's get on with it.

They are transported to 2010 and the TD Banknorth Garden is once again silent and, this time, half-empty.  The public address announcer has been replaced by the guy from the And One MixTape Tour.  The game itself is almost unrecognizable, as players are allowed to charge to the basket with the ball tucked under their arm like a football.  Power forwards set screens like fullbacks.  Defensive players stand like statues for fear of being called for a foul.  Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen sit on the bench in street clothes.

Danny: Wha...what happened?

Gerald Green: See, you didn't think about the future enough.  When the Celtics became so dominant in 2007, David Stern decided this was not good for the future of the league.  So, he changed the rules to make it fair once again.  Travelling was legalized.  There was no longer such thing as an illegal screen.  Defensive contact was made totally illegal.  Guys like Pierce, Allen and Garnett were rendered useless.  I'm an all-star now.

Danny: That's insane.  He's killed the game.

Gerald Green: All your moves were made with a view to short-term gains.  Ultimately, you would find yourself in an unjustifiable position.

Danny: So, I guess I have to change my ways.  I can't let things pan out this way.  I have to make moves with an eye on the future.  Right?

Gerald Green: Right.

The scene fades away.  Danny is back in his room and it is now dawn.

Danny: Wrong.  Because what you don't realise is that I noticed something back there.  When I saw the guys sitting on the bench, they were wearing street clothes.  But...they were all also wearing something else.  Championship rings!  Totally worth it.  I'm not changing a thing.

Danny throws open the window and looks out on a world which suddenly seems more perfect than ever before.  He feels a strange sense of calm.

Danny: Maybe I have been a bit hard on Doc.  I'll give him the day off after all.  He can do my ironing on boxing day.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

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