I have to tell you, what is going on in this particular NBA offseason is FAR more exciting than what happened in any recent ACTUAL NBA season. I’m so down on the NBA these days. Just not the same as when I was a kid and spoiled by the Bird-era Celtics. Totally different game. Fundamentals are lacking. No one boxes out anymore. Too many 1 on 4’s. Too many guys shooting threes. Too many isolation plays. Too much “showtime”. But I digress…
But this offseason? Interesting. I’m actually paying close attention to what is going on right now. I know nothing about these kids that will be drafted. But this draft has been hyped for seemingly two plus years. So how could you not get excited about it? I was hoping the Celtics would tank all year, even though I have no idea if any of these draftees are/will be any good. Just seemed like a better path than getting a bunch of average veterans to be mediocre for years. Lose this year, MAYBE the draft will help the C’s get better quickly. OR trade a ton of these picks for proven talent. Get better that way. Seemed like a great plan.
Throw in the fact that all these major players are opting out of their contracts and are free as well. Thankfully, Jo—El Anthony was one that opted in with his player option for the Celtics. So at least we got him. God, that guy is terrible. I guess there could be worse 13th men. But LeBron, ‘Melo and I’m sure a few more are bound to opt-out as well. Adds intrigue to the whole offseason.
Now, don’t think I am saying that the C’s have a chance at the major guys opting out. No F’n way LeBron comes to Boston. Nor Melo (thank God on that actually). Nor Bosh if he opts out. Etc. We know major free agents don’t come to Boston. It’s just how it is. And that’s ok.
The C’s can still get back to championship level. Maybe not soon. But there are ways. And they have armed themselves to be players over the next several days. With a ton of picks, some expiring contracts with value, a couple of players with value and trade exceptions…blah, blah, blah.
What will they do? No friggin’ idea. Kevin Love has of course been the big story. I actually don’t see that happening. And I don’t mind it. He’s a great player, no doubt. But if you bring him here with Rondo, you still are missing pieces to form a championship team. You say Sullinger? He’d probably go in a trade. Dirk Nowit–er, I mean Kelly Olynyk? Nope. Avery Bradley? Nope. Chris Babb? Ok, you get the picture. If the C’s trade for Love, what’s left? And will Love re-sign beyond the one year he has left? I’m not doing a deal if he doesn’t.
Rondo is a different story. It’s been no secret I’ve wanted him out of town for a long time now. The fact that they made this petulant baby (redundant?) the Captain is a total joke. He was a nice 4th piece in the (recent) Big Three era. But a top 2 guy? Nope. Doesn’t play D as good as he used to. Still can’t shoot jumpers or free throws. Disappears on occasion. I’m just done with him.
So the more I think about it, the more I am ok with tanking one more year. Originally I wanted this to only be a one year tank. Didn’t think I could do more than one year. But then the C’s didn’t tank enough. #6 pick? Not good enough. But combined with all their other picks in the near future, it may be ok. Just going to take longer. Somehow I am ok with that. To me, better than one year of Love and Rondo…or several years actually.
There has been rumors of trying for the #1 pick. Depending on the cost, I’d be all over that. The top 2 in Wiggins and Parker are supposed to be the real deals. If they stay at 6 and Embiid falls…well, that may be value too…but that scares the BEJESUS out of me. Too many red flags already with him (cough, Oden, Bowie…). One recent mock had the C’s taking him at 6 and a guy from Europe that can’t come over for 2 years (Saric) at 17. Intriguing, but jumping up to get one of the 2 potential studs seems like a better idea to me, depending on cost. I’m also just rooting against taking Shabazz Napier at 17 as well. Everyone locally seems to want him here…UConn and all. I’m good for now.
End result for me, is if the C’s get a good player at 6 (or an even better one at #1…though I really don’t think that will happen either), a contributor at 17, Sully and Olynyk keep developing, they get value in a Rondo trade (useful players AND picks), maybe get value for a sign and trade for Humphries, or a Bogans contract package, yada, yada, yada…and then “tank” again, it could be a good thing. All of that and the picks they have in the future, plus maybe a Bradley deal and quite possibly, Gerald Wallace’s expiring contract may have some value…also, can they revisit getting Asik from Houston for Bass and Green (there’s some D and rebounding in the middle for minimal cost)? Add it all up, and it may be a better scenario than people think.
But…I am ready for anything over the next couple of days and weeks. I KNOW Danny will do something, good or bad. He will do SOMETHING. Let’s see what happens…