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And his ability to make the midrange jumper has helped gain the confidence of his teammates, especially Rajon Rondo, who constantly uses dribble penetration to find an open Bass from 16 feet.
Bass has a player option at $4 million for next season. That certainly be a major issue for the Celtics this summer, as Bass could become an unrestricted free agent and cash in on his newfound success.
“I want to be here a long time playing alongside Rondo,’’ he said. “[But] to be honest, I am not that type of guy to even be thinking about things like [the option] because I just try to get better every day.’’
Seems like a good time to bring this up:
The key stat, of course, is Bass making $4 million this year and Baby making $6.3 and under contract for the next three years. And that's where we come back to the excerpt, because Bass has shown he's worth more than $4 million… and he's now worth more than $6.3 million. I'm not sure what the final number on Bass will be, but I'd expect to be somewhere around $7-8 million.
That's money I'd be inclined to spend. Bass has become a very good on-ball defender who has slowly improved his team defense as well. He's nailing that mid-range J very consistently now and he seems to be attack in the rim a little more often, which provides a nice mix to his offense. It's why I've always harped on it this season… when you drive successfully, you can get space for your bread-and-butter jump shot. It's like running to set up the pass in football. You have to set the defense up to get what you really want.
I'd like to see Bass back. He's fit in quite nicely here in Boston. It really makes me wonder what the hell he did to be in Stan Van Gundy's dog house in Orlando. Seems to me a big guy with a nice mid-range touch would be a perfect fit next to Dwight Howard so they could play a high/low game.
Oh well. Not my problem now.
Related links: Herald: Future in Celtics' minds
On Page 2: Ray may play tonight in New York
Allen is expected to join the team here for tonight’s game and will be a gametime decision, according to team president Danny Ainge.
“If he’s flying, then that has to be considered an improvement,” Ainge said.
The good news is the Celtics have done well without him. There has been no pressure on him to come back too soon or anything. With 5 games left, though, it'd be nice to get Ray in there so he can get comfortable with his role in the second unit. The playoffs are around the corner, and we'd love to see the Celtics be as well oiled a machine as possible.
Herald: Pietrus back in the swing | CSNNE: Pietrus confident C's can make a run at Banner 18 | ESPN Boston: Stiemsma's defensive turnaround | Jockeying for position: Five to go | WEEI: What advanced stats tell us about Rondo