Schwan: Do the right thing Danny. Trade Paul Pierce | Red's Army - The Voice of Boston Celtics Fans
Red's Army

Schwan: Do the right thing Danny. Trade Paul Pierce

Paul pierce drives against ChicagoBy Henry Schwan

There are reports that the Celtics are receiving inquiries from other teams about Paul Pierce. This is a no-brainer. Danny Ainge should trade him while the 34-year-old former All-Star still has some value. I wouldn't settle for less than a future first round pick and a young player who shows some upside. On the surface, this kind of return could be a reach, especially since the The Captain is grossly out of shape, and hasn’t exhibited much in the way of production before Monday night’s second half retro performance against the Thunder. However, there are teams out there looking for the final piece to get them an NBA title, and Pierce just may fit the bill.

The Celtics are going nowhere this year. It’s obvious, even though some out there want you to believe that the C’s will make some noise once they get in shape. The only noise you’ll hear is when the C’s team bus pulls out of the arena after they’ve been swept out of the first round of the playoffs. That is, if they even make the playoffs.

Believe it or not, the Celtics already have the blueprint to win banner 18. Let’s go back to the summer of 2007. The Celtics were awful, ending the season 24-58. They had two chips, a young Al Jefferson (21ppg/11 rpg) and the fifth pick in the NBA draft. We all know Danny traded Delonte West, Wally Szczerbiak, and that fifth pick (Jeff Green) to Seattle for Ray Allen. Then Danny sent Big Al to Minnesota (along with a host of forgettable players-Gerald Green, Sebastian Telfair, and Ryan Gomes) for KG. The rest is history; one NBA title and possibly two more if KG was healthy in 2009 and Perkins hadn’t ripped up his knee in game 6 of the NBA finals.

Look, the Celtics stunk for several years, and that’s why they were able to swing the deals for Allen and KG. The blueprint is simple. Become a lousy team, get high draft picks like Al Jefferson, hope they develop, and then have a shrewd G.M. (insert Danny Ainge here) who will trade them (and picks) away for established stars who still have something left in the tank and something to prove. It worked once and it can work again. The downside is we, the Celtics fans, must endure a long spell of horrible basketball before you can even begin to sniff the possibility of another NBA title.

Bye the way, don’t even entertain the possibility that the Celtics will bring in a couple of big time, raise the roof free agents next season (given the expiring contracts of Ray Allen and KG) and team them with Pierce. The Chris Paul and Dwight Howard post-lockout trade bacchanalia already tells us that uber free agents don’t want to come to Boston.

So cut out the sentimentality. It’s O-K to appreciate all that The Captain did for the C’s. But this is a business baby. Go ahead Danny. Ship Pierce out of town once he’s in game shape and let’s look ahead to Banner 18 being raised to the rafters in 2016? 2017? 2018? Your guess is as good as mine.

Henry Schwann is a radio host and columnist.  You can find him on FacebookTwitter, or  Henry will be a regular contributor to

Like this Article? Share it!

  • I’ve read articles arguing both sides, and I tend to agree with the Don’t Trade PP argument. But that’s just me.

  • Eli

    This is NOT just a business, baby. If sports were just a business, the only thing fans would care about would be revenues. Sports are special because there is a certain intangible magic that causes millions of people to rally behind a team that they are not directly working for. It’s emotional. It’s sentimental. To deny that is not only in poor taste, it’s flat out wrong.
    That’s not to say you don’t trade Paul Pierce, but in my opinion, if you do, the deal better be DAMN GOOD. Pierce is the Boston Celtics. A whole generation of fans grew up with him and this team. The bar is high, Danny. Know that.

  • keltic

    this article is useless, who do you want in return for pierce? cause just trading him is not “doing the right thing”. saying that you want a player with upside is way too broad, please be more specific if you are going to write an article with this headline.

  • danny going public about breaking the big 3 is irresponsible. the big 3 have handled themselves with class and professionalism and now they have to deal with their idiotic gm shooting his mouth off. media is about to have a field day.
    maybe the best thing is riding out the year and then resign kg/ray for reasonable money? celt’s would have boat loads of money and ray/kg as 6/7th men bench players. that would kick ass.

  • paul

    Well said. Why does no one else make this obvious point? No, it’s not just a business. It never has been.
    As for trading Pierce, sure, if someone offers you Dwight Howard. Otherwise, HELL NO. You don’t treat players like chunks of meat.

  • paul

    Why would Redsarmy, as awful a site as it is, publish trash like this?

  • paul

    Notice that everyone is talking about trades. No one is talking about a far more obvious thing we need to do: start to redesign the offense so that it starts to highlight the talents of our best player.

  • Precisely. I’ll be going to the Celtics at Dallas game next month not just to see them win/generate revenue, but to see my guys that I love seeing on the court. Win or lose I’m excited to see the Big Four play together. I won’t be going in just “a Celtics jersey,” I’ll be going in my Pierce jersey.

  • Lex

    I would submit that for contenders, KG and Ray Allen also have high value. Sure, their salaries come off next summer.
    But are we really gonna land a game-changing free agent?

  • I like this site, but I agree that this article is trash. Trading Pierce is only worth it for some tangible future player or draft picks. Only contenders are going to want him, so their draft picks will be low.

  • Lee in Oregon

    I’d rather be a crap team with Paul Pierce than be a crap team without him. The reason teams want him is because he’s still a good player, and has been incredibly durable his whole career. Trade Ray & KG, sure, but Pierce is a lifer in Green.

  • Cowensattheparty

    Danny gets paid good money to not be sentimental, even if he most definitely is, considering this is the team he won titles with.
    What´s next?
    Hold polls at redsarmy to determine which moves the Celtics should make? I´d give us two years to look like the Isiah Thomas Knicks.

  • We publish it because even though I, personally, disagree with it… it represents a viewpoint expressed by some Celtics fans right now.
    Disagree with it if you want, but that’s why it’s up.
    Also, thanks for visiting our awful site. I appreciate you subjecting yourself to us

  • I would be very disappointed if Pierce got traded/released. Now if he wants to go, which I’d be very surprised if he did, fine. But Pierce IS the Boston Celtics. Every fan, writer, blogger etc. is entitled to their own opinion and I respect that-but as a Boston fan, Pierce means so much to this team, and to the city and it’s fans. If Pierce goes, it would truly be a sad state of affairs here in Boston and all-over CelticNation. Don’t be stupid Danny.

  • Dennis in Vermont

    Danny had a plan. If Jeff Green were OK, and they had gotten David West, we’d be sitting pretty. Now, I think he has to do some rethinking. I agree, resigning KG and Ray to lesser contracts and getting Jeff Green back with another stud, I think we will be good. Paul deserves to retire a Celtic and have his number in the rafters. Would Danny have traded Bird, I don’t think so.

  • Scott

    I’m only going to say one thing. For all of you saying that sports isn’t a business…you clearly don’t know anything about, well, business. Get your heads out of the sand.

  • The Celtics did not trade Bird or McHal or DJ. They did finally trade Parish and Ainge. Yes, some said not trading the boys was the cause of years of mediocre teams. I don’t think so. Reggie Lewis, our up-and-coming star, died. Our potential superstar forward, Len Bias, died the night he was drafted. Walton blew out his ankle on an exercise bike. This sent the team on a downward spiral after the previous Big Five retired or were traded. Unless the offer was substantial, Danny should not consider trading Pierce. It is a business but one that honors our traditions. Paul stuck it out, waiting for a deal to rebuild the team. We should stick with him. He’ll be productive again. We never traded Sanders or Cousy or Sam or KC or Cowens or Jojo or Hondo, even as they got older. When a guy gives his soul to your team, you should respect that. Dwight Howard is a twit and Paul wanted a younger team now. Paul should have done his homework though; Donald Sterling has no loyalty and will trade ANYONE at the drop of a hat. Maybe that’s why the famous notion of Clippers Pride exists and why players stick it out until the end of their careers. :-). The real Big Foot is the Clippers’ player whose number has been retired and who prizes his Clippers’ Championship ring.

  • agreed. last night i watched toronto’s telecast and the announcers raved in jealousy about rondo changing the game and how superior the celtics ball movement was.
    certainly the pieces are there, but for this team to be effective they need a sense of urgency, they need to punish teams on the boards, and hardcore dirty defense.
    i think danny made an ass of himself w/those public statements.

  • michael

    I think PP could be very happy on the Clippers. It would put them solidly in contention for a title and they’d do whatever they could to acquire him without giving up Jordan, Griffin, or Paul. There’s no one else on the Clips we would really want, so I scoured the trade machine and came up with this:
    The Clips contend with Pierce. Utah gets rid of the underperforming Harris, gets a serviceable replcement in Mo Williams, and gets a great PG prospect in Bledsoe. Also, in giving up Millsap, they make room for Favors at PF.
    We get a stellar PF, a solid wing player in Miles (who is very talented and underused in Utah), and a huge upgrade at backup PG. Taking on Harris who is under contract for another year is more of a concession that I would think helps Utah agree to the deal. Our main target is Millsap. If we can get it done without involving Harris that’d be great.
    Miles can be signed as a free agent anyway, so really just looking for Millsap in return for Pierce. Maybe Utah gets some draft picks out of it, but I wouldn’t give up either of our first rounders this year.

  • michael

    For all you sentimentalists out there – the reason I didn’t propose a straight up Millsap/Harris for Pierce trade is because I think PP deserves better than Utah. From a business standpoint, I’d do that much simpler trade in a second. Though I don’t see any upside in it for Utah and I certainly don’t see any joy in it for Pierce

  • michael

    I humbly endorse this intelligent and smartly sarcastic reply

  • I like the article you have to look at all the options however I hope Paul gets to have the final say to go or stay.

  • true-celtics

    Trade Rondo not Paul Pierce, he’s an icon and a hall of famer. Pierce should retire as a celtics. We are not gonna win anything with rondo when the big 3 are done. Rondo can’t shoot and he makes too many turnovers in the games.

  • I think the ‘trade Paul’ camp is bonkers.
    Henry Schwan’s take on how the C’s landed Kevin is a strange oversimplification, one where he’s leaving out obvious, important details just to make his case.
    The second most important point he skips is that the list of assets that led to acquiring Ray and Kevin was a lot bigger than he admits, and it took years of dealing to accumulate them.
    Danny accumulated those assets by not making the sort of deal where you just give away a guy like Paul Pierce to a contender, for whatever they have to give you.
    The most important detail Schwann leaves out was that we had not only Paul, but also Rondo AND Perk on the roster already, and they did not get moved as part of any deals. Danny had some nice players and he kept them despite making the big moves.
    Danny didn’t always choose the right guys to keep. They let go of Joe Johnson for not much, in favor of developing Kedrick Brown. But the point is that you still have to try to hold on to the players you believe are worth holding on to.
    But overall, Danny did get it right. So long Marcus Banks, so long Gerald Green, etc. He moved those guys while the jury was still out on them, while plenty of other teams still thought they could make them into winners. And some of them probably could have, if things had gone a little differently.
    If we didn’t have a few nice players to hold on to beyond just Paul, we probably couldn’t have convinced Kevin to green light a deal. Do you really think he didn’t notice we had a center built like Perk on the roster?
    So now Rondo is the main guy. Ok, but we’d still need some other good players on the roster, to have a chance of getting good players to play here, whether it is by free agency or green lighting trades or whatever.
    I think when you then add up the ‘good players’ on the roster, you see that we really shouldn’t be that far away.
    So please…just relax for now. Enjoy watching a team come together.

    Come on people, the mass media does not want to help the Celtics. Why would anyone believe for a second that the recent frenzy of talk about how badly the Celtics need to trade Paul would be about helping the Celtics?

    Some have grasped the basic problem with trading Paul:
    Only teams that want to contend want Paul. They will give us nothing.
    Danny knows better than to trade for ‘cap space in the future.’ That’s not the kind of trade that built this era. The kind of trade that built this era was one which resulted in more real assets coming in than going out. Then they had a pile of assets and traded them for Ray and Kevin.
    Settling for ‘cap space in the future’ is how fools ruin their teams. Who can you get when you have a gutted roster? You have to overpay 2nd tier talent, and that gets you no where. Only a team like LA can start on empty.
    There’s nobody who can offer us anything for Paul worth trading him for.
    If there was, we’d be talking about it already. The Paul Pierce feeding frenzy is on again and has been on for days now and nobody has come up with anything other than ‘cap space in the future.’
    Same deal with Ray. Contenders would be interested, but they won’t offer the C’s enough to make it worth while, because they want to make a lopsided deal that does nothing but make them better.

    See where this is going?
    The unfortunate answer is that Kevin is the guy who you have to consider trading when it’s time to consider it.
    It’s not time yet.
    But here’s why it’d have to be Kevin.
    Contenders don’t want Kevin. If contenders wanted Kevin again, we would definitely not have to consider trading him.
    Teams that want to save money would want Kevin. Phoenix? New Orleans? I don’t know. I hope it doesn’t come to that.
    That sort of team is fine with starting over. That sort of team will give you one or more good players with long contracts in order to save money by getting your guy with the expiring contract. Kevin could even help a team sell some tickets.
    That way you can improve your team without improving a rival.
    The NBA has benefited recently (past two yearsish) from an unusual amount of deals where teams were willing to help rivals improve, because they were just that desperate to get better themselves.
    That still doesn’t mean the Celtics should do it at this point.
    The whole reason it happened was that people saw the Celtics and Lakers declining and decided it was time to make their move.
    A lot of teams want us both to be done, but we’re not done yet.
    The difference this time is that the Celtics have to come together as a team before they will be as good as other contenders. They will have to play very good team basketball to win the games against those other contenders. They’ve still got the pieces they need, but they’ve got to help each other.
    If they come together as a team and play like a team, and they still can’t hang with the contenders, then it’s time to think about moving Kevin, but we can’t panic and do something before then.