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Your Morning Dump… Where the Pierce rumors are coming from everywhere

John - Red's Army (@RedsArmy_John) May 27, 2013 Celtics News, Paul Pierce, The Morning Dump 26 Comments

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.

Sources indicate Celtics director of basketball operations Danny Ainge will likely buy out forward Paul Pierce’s $15 million contract for next year ($5 million is guaranteed). If that happens, [Cleveland Cavaliers GM Chris] Grant should be first in line to try to acquire Pierce’s services. However, before anyone gets too giddy, Pierce will likely want to go to a serious contender.

News-Herald (Northern Ohio)

There’s always some random person somewhere that has “sources that indicate” something.  I don’t know who Bob Finnan is, or who his sources might be.  He could be talking to a few people he knows with the Cavs who say “yeah, I hear they might buy him out”… and there you go… sources are saying something.  So I’ll take this with a grain of salt.

Still, the reports are circulating about Pierce, and it makes sense.  With the Celtics over the tax line, $10 million in savings will go a long way.

There IS a way to bring Pierce back, though (I think).  I haven’t seen anything that prevents the Celtics from re-signing Pierce with the bi-annual exception after they waive him.  Letting him go would mean giving up his Bird Rights (the rights that allow you to sign a player that’s been with you for three or more years to a contract that exceeds the salary cap).  But it wouldn’t prevent him from returning as a regular free-agent.

IF the Celtics want to keep Pierce, they could pay him the $5 million in a buyout, then sign him for a year at $2 million, essentially giving him $7 million to play here.

Again… I think this is true and I haven’t seen any language in the CBA that prevents it.  The league, however, does hold the right to prevent any gaming of the system.  So well see if it can actually happen.  If it is allowed, the Celtics would end up saving $8 million on the cap this year, bringing their overall number down to $68 million.  If the tax line is somewhere around $72 million, that extra $2 million they pay Pierce could become problematic without subsequent moves to pare down money.  This is all assuming their goal is to not pay taxes this year.

The Cavs probably would be first in line should Danny Ainge waive Paul Pierce.  But if I’m Pierce, I’m looking at 2 options:  (1) returning to Boston at a super home-town discount like I described above, thus cementing him in the hearts of C’s fans or (2) going to home to Los Angeles and signing with the Clippers if they offer some kind of mid-level deal.

That’s about it to me.  I’m not going to begrudge the guy for taking the opportunity to play at home for once.  If the C’s are going to cut him loose, then he might as well take advantage of it and have some fun in front of his friends and family.

Pierce doesn’t want to leave Boston.  And I’m sure the C’s don’t WANT to cut him.  But business is business, and sometimes you do things you have to do, but don’t want to do.

There’s still a good month before this all has to go down.  We’ll see if any new reports come out between now and then.

The rest of the links:

ESPN Boston:  Larkin makes short stop in Boston  |  Adams a center of attention  |  CSNNE:  Conference Call:  Will Doc be back?  |  Globe:  Shane Larkin among familiar faces at C’s workout  |  Herald:  Danny Ainge, NBA Teams, covet public presence of Doc Rivers  | Lawrence Journal World:  Jeff Withey works out for Celtics

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  • http://www.facebook.com/frank.aziza Frank Aziza

    Funny how good the Spurs old guys look with some good pieces around them. DA hasn’t really done nothing except try and move ours. The help he’s brought in have been nothing but busts. Some of the draft pick were ridiculous, correct me if I’m wrong but did we draft JR Giddins over Deandre Jordan ?

    • Ron

      Agree. You don’t hear about the Mavs, Lakers or Spurs trying to trade off Dirk, Bryant or Duncan. But with the Celtics it’s the opposite. It’s one thing for Paul Pierce to be treated as one of the most underrated HOF in league history, but it’s another for the Celtics franchise to treat him like he’s underrated. I get that sooner or later the Celtics will need to move on from KG and PP, but they still have some gas left in their tank. I just feel like Ainge has done a bad job adding quality role players around KG, PP and RR.

      Too often Danny Ainge is left of the hook when it comes to his poor judgement in trades, signs and acquisitions. The difference between the Spurs and Celtics organization is the Spurs don’t panic or rebuild when their season doesn’t end with championship. The Spurs keep their core and scout quality talent to help out. The Celtics model is championship or bust, then panic if there is no championship. After the ’08 season Danny Ainge has done a poor job putting the C’s in a position repeat multiple times. The Celtics and Danny Ainge scout subpar talent or injury prone players to help bring down the C’s and piss fans off in the process.

      • KGino

        Correction: injuries have done a poor job putting the Cs in a position to repeat. Lets not forget we may have won 3 in a row if not for KG & Perk injuries

    • wil

      Well Popovich is probably the best coach still active, their core has been playing for like 10 years together? Our problem is not just as simple as getting talent, but being able to tap into it

    • John Smith

      That’s weak man, don’t be a fool. You’re seriously complaining because of a failed draft pick, that was the 30th pick? And where was the need for Deandre Jordan, back then, Perk was the future centre.

      The fact is, the Celtics have competed every year, like the Spurs, the only difference between the Spurs and the Celtics is that the Celtics have been to the final twice since Danny built this team, and the Spurs have been there ZERO times since then. Comparing the Celtics success to the Spurs, to moan about Ainge, is stupid.

      • http://www.facebook.com/frank.aziza Frank Aziza

        The difference is the spurs praise their big 3 we treat ours like crap.

  • forever_green

    I do the same thing with rumors that I do with toilet paper…

  • Valpejula

    Thank You! I might have problems reading with understanding but I think this is the first article talking about buying him out and than resigning him for less cash. I think it’s a really good option and if it’s possible – go for it. He is the captain – don’t let him dress other colours

  • LA Flake

    Please forgive me if I sound phony. I’m just trying to share here.

    So, I had an opportunity to see and talk to my new BFF again, probably for the last time before he left town, last night. And he said to me…

    He was “hearing” from his friends in Phoenix that they are all enamored with, and drooling over the prospect of drafting Andre Wiggins next year. They know that they’re not gonna be any good this year. So.

    Ryan McDonough, their new GM who is largely responsible for drafting AB, Sully and Fab for the C’s, will very likely offer Marcin Gortat to Danny for one or two of the guys mentioned and/or draft picks. He said he was sure Phoenix was interested in Fab Melo but their interest in him may not be as strong since Fab hardly played. And since the Suns are about to tank the season to get Wiggins next year, they’re in a full “accumulate assets” mode like Danny was before he got KG. When I said, “I hope Danny doesn’t give up AB or Sully for Gortat, my new BFF raised his brow and said, “He’s a top 10 center in the league” and that shut me up.

    Anyhow, he was just speculating based on what he heard. He doesn’t work for the Suns or the C’s. As for this “reporting” I’ve been doing the last two days, this will be it since I’ve probably seen the last of him. I’m out, y’all. Totally ignored my family this weekend just so I could hang out with my new BFF, so I’m in the doghouse now. Gotta go make it up to the wife.

    • LA Flake

      Oh yeah, the reason why McDonough will deal with the C’s is because he drafted our young players and his familiarity with Danny and the C’s. Whether this really goes down or not is anyone’s guess but you can bet Phoenix will be working hard to unload their vets in exhange of young pieces. So, chew on that!

    • wil

      Well, its not like being a top 10 center today is like being a top 10 center before. There hasnt really been that much competition in that area.

      I still think we’ll be wasting our time with gortat, theres alot more prospects in the big man department that will help us stay as a playoff team for more years than getting gortat who probably has just a few years on his prime.

      • LA Flake

        yeah but gortat isn’t that much older than rondo and he’ll be a BIG target for rondo. it’s like what this guy told me. if he was on our team, we’d be very reluctant to trade him for a young player like AB or Sully. i don’t know. i left feeling very conflicted.

  • http://twitter.com/efendiyev tatlıkafa

    i seriously don’t understand that utter desire for getting rid of the guy. its not like he is playing 5-3-1 games. his assisting and rebounding of this past season was much better than the championship season. and with almost same ppg. here take a look http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/p/piercpa01.html

  • Dombili

    “IF the Celtics want to keep Pierce, they could pay him the $5 million in a buyout, then sign him for a year at $2 million, essentially giving him $7 million to play here.”

    How in the world is that possible? There are very specific terms in order for a team to renegotiate a contract with a player and we simply can not do it. We’re not even below the cap and it’s almost impossible for us to get below the cap. If what you said was doable, every team in the league would do that, hence render the whole cap thing useless. Our options as to what we can do with Pierce is limited: we can buy him out, trade him, or let him finish his contract. There are no other realistic options.

    Danny is one of the smartest GMs in the league. I’m certain in his mind buying Pierce out is the last resort. He’ll either try to trade him to a team that has a lot of cap room and take young talent/less expensive contracts in return, or he will try to land a more traditional deal with matching contracts (e.g.: proposed Eric Gordon trade). If he can’t do both, then he’ll buy him out and as much as I love Pierce, I hope he does. Letting Pierce finish his contract would be a huge mistake. We need to position ourselves as best as possible for the 2014 draft. A lot of people saying that they want to see Pierce retired in green, and I do too, but I also don’t want us to suck for another couple of years just because we didn’t have the cojones to do what’s necessary.

    • http://redsarmy.com/ John Karalis

      It’s “doable” because of a couple of reasons:
      (a) Pierce is at the end of his contract. This is not a renegotiation. It’s the team waiving a guy, paying him the guaranteed portion of the deal ($5 million) and moving on.
      (b) They have cap exceptions to sign free agents even though they’re over the cap. Pierce, once waived (assuming the very good likelihood that he passes through waivers since no one will want to pay him the full $15 million), becomes like any other free agent. The bi-annual exception is at the team’s disposal. They can use that to sign him.

      This is a pretty unique situation. Teams just can’t cut guys and re-sign them for less money. This situation works because of the guaranteed money that’s owed to him and the exception the C’s have. That’s it.

      • Dombili

        Maybe we’re looking at this issue the wrong way.

        For the sake of the argument, let’s say that we are able to buy out Pierce and sign him again using the BAE, which is roughly $2M. What’s the upside of that? The only upside I see is that we’ll be below the tax apron, which is a huge plus but we may already be below the apron without buying Pierce out (no one knows what the apron’s gonna be yet but last season we were very close to it). Other than that, I don’t see any upside. If you do, please do tell.

        Downsides? A lot. Let’s say that Danny changed his mind and want to trade Pierce mid season. Now he can’t really do it, because Pierce is a BAE player. We have to get someone who’s getting paid no more than BAE because we have to match contracts in a trade, since we’re way above the cap. So you’re basically ruining your chances of trading Pierce (unless you agree to take some mediocre player). Now let’s say that Danny decides to let Pierce play through his contract. We’ll be a mediocre team at best, we’ll probably make it to the play-offs but we’ll be out in the first round. That’d put us around 16-17th place in the ’14 draft, which will -supposedly- be as good as the ’03 draft. It’s crucial for us to get ready for that. If we don’t position ourselves as best as we possibly can, our “rebuilding” process will definitely take a hit. And by keeping Pierce on the team, you’re basically guaranteeing that.

        I’d personally be relieved to see Pierce wearing another uniform next year. I have my own selfish reasons and believe me, it really hurts writing this stuff. I’m from Europe and I’ve been following the NBA for more than 10 years. You have no idea how many sleepless nights I had because I wanted to watch the C’s play, even when they sucked. Those were challenging times for me and I don’t want to go through that again. Plus, I’m not painting a bad scenario for Pierce here. He can sign with a contender, he can win another ring. I’d be so happy for him. But in this day and age, we simply can not afford being sentimental.

    • swissflix

      very well said. agree with moving forward and the 2014 draft. Also, love your profile picture. one of the coolest floyd recordings ever.

      • Dombili

        Thanks! :)

  • swissflix

    the comparison with the Spurs just does not work. It is wishful thinking. Sure, KG and Duncan are the defensive towers and they still bring it. But the offense is carried out by Parker and we do NOT have such a player. They don’t have their offense centered around an old player. Ginobili gets the open looks because of Parker (and besides, he is also more athletic than Pierce).
    So the rumour of Cleveland really does not have anything to do with Danny not treating Pierce with any respect. He is just doing his job as a GM.

  • Ulf

    Rumors are called rumors for a reason. I seriously doubt we’ve seen the last of PP in Green, besides, I don’t really feel we are in a position to do any serious rebuilding this offseason anyway.

    In my humble opinion we’re best off just reloading, if possible replacing some of our weaker pieces to get a decent big man.

    Some of our late season additions weren’t half bad and will benefit a lot from a full training camp, if we just stick with it I believe we’ll look good next season.

  • ShawnCVD

    Building through the draft and exposing this young nucleus to losing is not a way to do it. There’s so many variables too. No KG, no PP this team still finishes between 10-15 range. Unless Rondo pulls a DRose and takes the season off. Then the Cs are in the cellar.

    Maybe Ainge can try the NOLA trade and get a future pick ? I’m a fan of becoming a player in next year’s free agency so move a few of Bass/Lee/Terry contracts and let PP/KG get off the books naturally. They’d be huge trade chips next February too.

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  • Joe

    I don’t think that any this makes any sense what so ever. To talk about buying out Paul is not crazy… But to do this even before the draft is ridiculous. DA explores every option to extreem detail. How does it make sense that he would just say, “Ehh.. I’ll just buy him out”
    That’s dumb.

  • frickenWaaaltah

    If they only want to save money to get under the apron, just waive Terry.

    Somebody will pick him up after he clears waivers offsetting some or maybe even all of his contract. They can also use the new ‘stretch provision’ to spread any remaining cap impact out over a few more years.

    Paul’s contract is up in 2014 anyway; Terry’s isn’t up until 2015. Waiving Paul doesn’t improve their summer 2014 positioning, while waiving Terry does.

    Terry wasn’t that great a fit and the C’s also have AB and Lee; they should just commit to developing Lee. I like Jet a lot more now than I ever thought I would, but he just wasn’t quite right for the situation after all. With too many 2’s it’s addition by subtraction for the roster.

    I also really don’t like the idea of waiving Paul just to re-sign him and save a little money without even making the team any better. Oh hey Paul ol buddy, we just took 10 mil back from you but come on, just re-sign with us eh?

    What if the Clippers or Golden State offer a better exception? What if some other team with cap space looking to create a winning culture decides that Paul is their target vet for their young players in their early years, and the combo of money and location appeals to him? Even if he is ‘overpaid’ now can’t we just gladly overpay a career Celtic for a year?

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