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.
“Next year’s draft we don’t see as loaded. We see it as top-heavy,” he said. “(But) there will be more impact players next year.”
In other words, Ainge believes they have to pick among the top 10 to make the trip worth their while. And they haven’t had a selection that high since the 10th pick of the 2001 draft — Joe Johnson. Pierce came to them on that same number in 1998.
But the Celtics may be just talented enough with Rondo, Jeff Green, Avery Bradley, Brandon Bass, Jared Sullinger and the best of the Nets additions to fall into the most dreaded territory of all — NBA middle earth, the land of the late lottery picks.
The Celtics roster – as currently constituted – is good enough to make the playoffs next season. They might even equal the win total (41) of last year’s squad.
Seems impossible, considering Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce will be wearing black and hanging in Brooklyn next season, but last year’s team woefully underachieved.
I’m expecting Rondo, Bradley, Green and Sullinger to be better. Depending on who sticks around, there are decent bench players (Kris Humphries, Gerald Wallace and Courtney Lee) on this roster.
But if the Celtics want a real shot at the likes of Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins, they’re going to have to shave 15-20 wins off last year’s total.
And as ML Carr will tell you, that’s not easy:
The hardest part, said Carr, was straddling the fine line between encouraging his team to play the game the right way but make sure they didn’t win too much.
“I remember one game in particular, when David Wesley was hitting jump shots and 3-pointers all over the floor,” Carr said. “I had to get him out of the game.
“He came over to me and said, ‘Coach, what are you doing? I just hit four shots in a row.’ I said, ‘I know, David, but I’m experimenting.’
“I’ll tell you, it was brutal. Those players were smart. They knew what we were doing.
I want no part of tanking.
We’ve been down this road and it doesn’t work (see Mercer, Ron and Billups, Chauncey).
If Danny Ainge is determined to get a Top 5 pick, he needs to trade Rondo and Green immediately. That will guarantee a 15 win season.
I’d rather the Celtics rebuild around their current core.
Rondo is not a franchise player, but he’s a damn good #2. Give Green a chance to show his stuff without training wheels. He can be a viable #3.
The pressure would then fall on Ainge to find that top dog and acquire him in a package of expiring contracts, draft picks and promising young players (Bradley or Sullinger).
Which way would you go?
The rest of the links:
Herald – Paul Pierce: Real C’s original | Olynyk earns high marks from a few | ESPN Boston – Trade Rondo, too? | CSNNE – A look back at KG’s time in Boston | Olynyk ready to do what it takes | Globe – Brown interested in Celtics coaching job | WEEI – Truth & Ticket: A Legacy