Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
“All three of them are real blows to us,” said Ainge. “First of all, we lose our star player and then Jared and then Barbosa. That’s devastating. We’re short on guards now, and we have to bring someone in. We have players we like in the D-League, and we have a little more than a week before the trade deadline. And we’ll explore all of that.
“Immediately we will probably bring someone in on a 10-day contract, and we’re going through all those names. There’s a lot of names actually, but it’s going to be very difficult to replace Leandro Barbosa.”
[…] “There are guys playing all around the world, and I need to figure out when they may become available with their contracts,” said Ainge. “So there’s a lot to go through here.”
The immediate 10-day help could come in the form of Shelvin Mack, who has played a large portion of the season for the Maine Red Claws, and is therefore familiar with at least some of what the Celtics are doing.
And there was that one day the guys in Maine wore Celtics uniforms, so now I don’t even have to Photoshop him… his photo in a Celtic uniform already exists.
And Mack says he’s ready for the call… if it comes.
“I feel like it would be a great opportunity,” Mack said of the Celtics, adding, “(I haven’t been given any indication from the Celtics), I try not to worry about that. That’s another thing I’ve learned throughout this process, just worry about the things you can control. I can’t control how they’re thinking, All I can control is just going out and playing basketball, trying to be a great basketball player and a great teammate.”
[…] “The biggest thing I know with the system is, it’s not about individual stats. It’s all about championships and competing at a high level,” he said. “I’m a big fan of defense. Everyone can score points but a lot of things come down to effort and being able to play defense.”
Will Mack last the season (if shows up at all)? It’s hard to speculate. D-League guys can be such wild cards. Mack’s gotten a couple of 10-day looks, and he had moderate success with the Wizards, where he averaged about 5 points and 3 assists. But he’s not “instant offense” like Barbosa was. In fact, Mack’s been shooting pretty poorly all year long. He shot 40% in 7 games with the Wizards (he was 1-2 in 4 games with Philadelphia) and he’s shooting 44% with the Red Claws.
As for the “beyond the border” options… two names keep getting thrown at me: Dionte Christmas and Jonny Flynn. Christmas, who became a favorite here thanks to some Summer League success (especially after the Courtney Lee trade), is now playing with CSKA Moscow, one of the Euroeague power for more money the Celtic can offer him. I’m not sure if there’s an NBA out, but I’m not sure if he wants it right now, either. There’s a second year on his contract (likely a team option year, but I’m not sure), and Christmas is still young enough to make a little cash from one of the few teams that actually honors their financial obligations in Europe.
As for Flynn, he’s having a grand ol’ time in Australia, feasting on the competition to raise his NBA value. He just dropped 23 points and 8 assists in his last game, and is averaging 17.6 points, 6.1 assists, and 4 rebounds a game. He reportedly has an NBA-out clause, so we’ll see if he’s one of the actual targets. I caution you, though… don’t put too much stock in NBL success. Courtney Lee could probably average a triple double over there.
I wouldn’t be shocked to hear news of something soon. The Celtics need bodies, and fast. They have 10 healthy guys, and one is Fab Melo… so like, nine and a half healthy guys. They need someone on the bench in case the refs get whistle happy or if someone else…
… oh, I don’t even want to think about that.
I don’t expect a trade because the C’s can’t really spare anyone, and they don’t have any players that will bring back more than one guy. But you never know what Danny has up his sleeve… and you never know when the ownership will give its blessing to blow things up.
Related links: ESPN Boston: Examining options at point guard
The rest of the links:
ESPN Boston – Celtics obstacle course continues | Globe – Russell, Garnett and selfless play | Celtics lose Barbosa for season | CSNNE – Torn ACL means Barbosa season over | Ryan not optimistic Rondo will learn