The Red Claws are coming, the Red Claws are coming.

Well, not the entire team, but at least the team’s head coach Austin Ainge, son of Danny Ainge, president of basketball operations for the Boston Celtics president.

The Maine Red Claws Summer Clinic Series, sponsored by Dunkin’ Donuts, is ongoing and will stop in Thomaston on Wednesday, Aug. 25 at 10 a.m. The crew for the month-long series will have logged, when finished, 1,200 miles in Maine — from Houlton to Kittery — to give free clinics in the parking lots of Dunkin’ Donuts.

The Midcoast clinic will be at the Dunkin’ Donuts restaurant at 206 New County Road in Thomaston, next to the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles building. Thomaston will be the final stop for the clinics.

The free clinics are led by Maine Red Claws head coach Austin Ainge, who instructs children of all ages and skill levels during 90-minute sessions held in the parking lots of participating Dunkin’ Donuts franchises. No preregistration is necessary.

More information can be found on the Red Claws website at as well as at the participating Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants.

More than 100 Dunkin’ Donuts stores in Main,  locally owned and operated by franchisees are continually are looking for ways to give back to their community with programs such as these clinics.

While at the clinic, parents will have the opportunity to become a member of the new “Very Important Parent” program which recognizes the daily efforts made by “on-the-go” parents and supports the YMCA. For a minimum $5 donation, participants receive a limited edition travel mug and a free medium coffee on Sundays through the end of this year.

2009-10 marked the inaugural season for the Maine Red Claws, an affiliate of the Boston Celtics and Charlotte Bobcats. The NBA D-League team plays its home games at the Portland Expo Building. The franchise is owned and operated by Maine Basketball, LLC, which is principally owned by Bill Ryan Sr., the retired chairman of TD Bank, and Bill Ryan Jr., owner and operator of Oxford Plains Speedway. Jon Jennings, a partner in Maine Basketball, LLC and former Boston Celtics assistant coach, serves as the team’s president and general manager.

The NBA Development League, founded in 2001, is the NBA’s official minor league whose teams have direct affiliations to NBA franchises. For the 2009-10 season, the league featured 16 teams — including the debut of the Maine Red Claws and the Springfield Armor, while a new team, the Texas Legends, will join the league for the 2010-11 season.

A proven developer of talent, 20 percent of players in the NBA at the conclusion of the 2009-10 season boasted NBA D-League experience, while the league continues to develop coaches, referees, and front-office staff for the NBA and its teams. In fostering the league’s connection to the community, its teams, players and staff promote health and wellness, support local needs and interests, and assist in educational development through NBA D-League Cares programs.

The NBA D-League also advances the game of basketball as the research and development arm of the NBA. Throughout the season fans can watch all NBA D-League games on NBA Futurecast, the free live Web-streaming initiative found at

VillageSoup sports staff can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail at