Danny Ainge isn’t placing much stock into what his coach and players said in the afterburn of the Celtics’ playoff elimination last Friday night.And, amid one report that a deal with the Clippers that may include Doc Rivers is being tossed about in NBA circles (he got a good laugh at that one), the club’s president of basketball operations is turning a completely deaf ear as to what the Celts are or should be doing. Ainge seemed a bit surprised yesterday that the Boston future of his coach, who has three years remaining on his contract, is in question.
Danny Ainge seems to have a similar reaction to Greg Dickerson’s team source (that could possibly be Ainge) when it comes to this crazy Doc/KG/Pierce to LAC rumor. Ainge is also taking the measured approach in regards to finding out from those three what their plans are:
Ainge was apprised of the comments and those of Pierce and Garnett, who also wondered about the future. He’s choosing to give everyone involved the proper room to decompress.
“I think it’s a long season, and I think these guys get exhausted,” he said. “They put a lot into it, and they love the game. I don’t really pay much attention to what anybody says in the first week after the season.”
Ainge was asked during the season whether he thought Rivers was interested in staying on the bench if the Celtics had to go into a heavy reconstruction phase that would likely entail a step back. Ainge said at the time that Rivers had already been discussing with him what might be needed to make that type of period as brief as possible.
“We’ve talked about it for the last couple of years,” Ainge said yesterday. “I mean, Doc’s known that this time of transition may come this year, next year, last year, whenever. He’s known there could be a transition in the course of the contract that he’s under.”
Nevermind a week, it has barely been the weekend since the Celtics were eliminated from round 1 of the NBA Playoffs at the hands of the New York Knicks and a native New Yorker, Stephen A. Smith has already rattled the cage in Boston. I’m not so concerned with a crazy scenario of trading Pierce, Garnett and umm, the head coach (Doc) because it’s just that, crazy. What did make me raise an eyebrow and grab my attention is when Cedric Maxwell flat out stated that all three would NOT return in some capacity. Max is around this team closely all season, travels with them, talks with them and hears things throughout the season. I’m sure Doc will decide before the draft on his future, but if he decides not to coach the Celtics this year he’s unlikely to coach anywhere for a year. So he’ll either return on go to TV.
As far as KG and Pierce, Ainge is correct in giving them all at least a week to decompress and take a step back from a forgettable season. There is a relatively early deadline for all of this nonsense to begin/end and that’s at the end of June when Pierce’s option is due. Until then, be ready to be peppered will all sorts of crazy rumors. If you thought the trade deadline was wild just buckle up for this off-season. It will be like visiting Six Flags everyday.
The rest of the links: Herald – Diagnosis: Celtics need Doc | Celtics Final Report Card | Globe – Major offseason questions for the Celtics | Open letter to Celtics’ Danny Ainge | Some random sports thoughts | CSNNE – Ainge: No doubt about Rondo’s impact on the Celtics