So here we come upon my promised 2 weeks of reckoning. If you are reading this and wondering, “what the hell is this guys talking about?” then join the crowd, if people printed out my rants they would only use them to line a birdcage. Alas people don’t even waste the paper for their birds on my dribble-drabble. Regardless, 2 weeks ago I posted that by St Patty’s Day we would know where we stood with the exodus or mini-facelift of our beloved Celtics. Well here it is: Ainge is a [I am not giving it away so quick.]
Now are we better today then we were 2 weeks ago? I really don’t think so. The Celts on February 1st could beat the Celts of March 1st, but and I am using a very big Kardashian but[t] here… the team is still better. The reason I think the old team is better is that we are soaked in injuries right now with Baby, West and Shaq still laid up or just returning and the new guys are all still learning the system.
While they did take a momentary step back for March I do think the Celtics will be a better team come April, improve through May and dominate in June. Let’s weigh the trade:
We gave up Kendrick Perkins who I can not say enough good things about. I truly thought he would be a lifer and leader of this team for a decade to come. When Ainge pulled the trigger on this trade it shot me through the heart, honestly. But, looking at this as a fan it explains why I am on a couch watching the games and blogging about the Celtics and he is in a corner office running the Celtics. Perk was injured yet again and is just finally making his first appearance for the OKC tonight as we speak. In the course of events if Perk was not traded he might have been healthy, but for how long. Unfortunately his knees are not going to be reliable for the remainder of his career. Trading Perk was the right move from a VPs prospective. And guessing by his quick signing one of two things happened, either the trade scared him into the deal or he never wanted to be in Boston, only he knows. In any case, best wishes Perk.
We received Nenad Krstic who at this point I could not say enough good things about, he is just awesome. Nenad was never putting up this type of play in OKC, but I really thought Nenad would do well, just not this well. Frankly the way the Celtic’s run their system anyone can play center successfully when KG is healthy. Not a knock against Nenad, he has played far better then I could have imagined, but look at the track record of centers with KG and as long as they put in effort they put up good numbers because he covers so much of the posts it lets them cheat inside. The positives Krstic lends that are intangibles are his FT numbers which Perk did not have and his mid range shot, which also Perk did not have. The ability of Big-K to hit a FT stops the opposing D from cheating off Krstic and covering the Big 3 in a tight game. How big will this be if we were in Game 7 all over again?
Advantage: Nenad Krstic
We gave up Nate Robinson, but lets face it, was Nate really working out in Boston? As much as I wanted him to succeed he just was not all that great here. He was working off limited bench minutes and he was just not putting it together fast enough night after night, his sketchy productivity really made him a liability in close games. Nate has been laid up with injury since his first game, Ainge could not have seen this coming, but it is good for us that we don’t have to sweat another injury.
We got Jeff Green in return. Now his early numbers are definitely better then Nate Robinson’s, but Green gives us something Nate could never offer, true depth behind Paul Pierce. His presence and reliability, not to mention his ability to swing into the 2-spot will be such a huge asset once he is familiar with the system. New and green(no pun intended) he has still averaged a nice dozen points, give him a few weeks and he will be right there at his season average of 15ppg.
Advantage: Jeff Green
The Celtics gave up Semih Erden, Luke Harangody & Marquis Daniels in trades for picks. Semih was a great free agent sign and he put in a solid effort when ever he hit the floor, but he was a casualty of roster space for buyout signees. Luke was a prospect that was just that, a prospect and if they want to make the best run at the title do you want to put the bench spots on the shoulder of a guy who is still just getting his feet wet. Daniels was having a great season after a disastrous 2010, but then the brutal neck injury happened and he became great to a team looking to grab some expiring contract money. If Daniels recovers fully it is unfortunate that he won’t wear green, I was just starting to really think we was a great bench player.
The Celtics used this space to pick up Carlos Arroyo, Troy Murphy & Sasha Pavlovic as half season buyout free agents. First the obvious negative, Pavlovic, why they signed him I don’t know I would have kept looking or held onto Harangody. In the middle in Troy Murphy, we need to cut him slack, he hasn’t played much in the past year and is still working into his wind. He will be very worthy if he puts in even a 75% effort at 6’11. I would put money on him being a positive replacement to Semih. That brings us to Carlos Arroyo, when they first signed him I wondered why, after the first game it was clearly evident. This was a totally worthwhile signing, Arroyo plays with the effort that we lost with Erden.
Advantage: Undecided, but strongly leaning towards Arroyo, Murphy & Pavlovic.
Again, could the Celtics of February 1st beat the Celtics of March 1st? I really think the Feb-Guys cohesion and teamwork would over power the new group, but not for much longer. This team is clearly better off or atleast on that track. Back to that first statement, “Well here it is: Ainge is a [I am not giving it away so quick.]“ Answer- Genius.
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