Thursday, August 02, 2007

Celtics Stuff: Boiled Down

This is pathetic, but I am throwing up a quick post to put all of my scattered thoughts on this Boston stuff in one place. I've been all over the map on this topic, which I'm blaming on being out of practice because of the bar exam. So here it goes:

1. On draft day, I felt that the Ray Allen trade was a good idea, because I believed (against all odds) that Danny Ainge had a master plan to use the Ratliff contract to bring in another key piece. In fact, I gave the C's an A+ for their draft. Maybe a little too enthusiastic, but to this day I am confused why everyone flipped out.

2. In the first hours of the renewed KG rumors, I made a case for Boston doing whatever it took to get Garnett, including trading Al Jefferson. I've seen several people argue this point and take the other side, using stats to make a case for Jefferson being "nearly as good" as KG. I don't buy it. I don't doubt Al's potential, but KG is a vastly superior defender and leader and he's done it in every situation. Jefferson's only stint of elite (if we can call it that) production came when Boston had already stuck a fork in its season last year. Not exactly high stakes. (Note though that I did not advise adding Ryan Gomes to a KG deal - I think Boston is really, really going to miss him.)

(I also suggested that Boston then turn Rondo and a future pick into Jose Calderon, which was apparently the result of someone slipping PCP into my Trader Joe's burrito, as numerous Raps fans kindly pointed out. I guess Colangelo is prepared to lay out big cash for Calderon and move forward with a point guard platoon that earns north of $15 mil a year. Who knew?)

3. Once the KG deal was complete, I joined the likes of ESPN's Marc Stein in a Celtics Kool-Aid drinking contest, but with the caveat that they would need to add some cheap veterans. I didn't see this as being a tremendously difficult task, considering they had the entire $6 mil exception with guys like Brevin Knight, Ime Udoka, Matt Barnes, Ruben Patterson, James Singleton, and P.J. Brown on the market. Adding the former and the latter and one of the swingmen in the middle would have rounded out this roster nicely. Instead, they opted for Eddie House and Jackie Manuel, which I found deeply disturbing.

4. Given the news that Ainge had crapped the bed with his first post-KG moves (and, in the process, betrayed the trust that I placed in him way back on draft day), I decided to see if Boston could somehow add another piece via trade. This is the post that Henry linked too in True Hoop and it is important to note that these were last gasp ideas to salvage the mess that is the Boston roster.

5. Coming soon ... why I am a Rondo Believer.

So that's where we are at. I've gone from feeling oddly (and uniquely) optimistic about the Ray Allen trade to feeling vindicated when the KG deal went down to being completely perplexed by Boston's inability and unwillingness to finish the job. I know I've asked this before, but ... Eddie House and Jackie Manuel?

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