Monday, July 30, 2007
Monday, 7/30/07's main point: Garnett to Boston??
Want to salvage your reputation as a GM, Danny Ainge? Then make it happen. Get Red Sox season tickets (if he likes baseball). Promise him a 50-foot-long yacht (if he enjoys sailing). Make him comfortable about the idea of coming to your city.
Make him a Boston Celtic.
Do whatever it takes. Even if it means parting with talented youngsters Al Jefferson and Gerald Green and future draft picks. The future can wait. Ainge can't afford to suffer too many miserable seasons, and certainly can't sit through any more 18-game losing streaks.
They need to win now. The NBA needs them. Pro basketball needs them to become relevant on the East Coast once again. If Ainge acquired Garnett, still one of the league's top five players, the Celtics would be one of the favorites to reach the NBA Finals out of the East.
Yeah, just like that.
Think about it. Regardless of who's running the point for the Celtics (probably second-year player Rajon Rondo) and who the other starter would be (Kendrick Perkins maybe?), with Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen on the floor, the Celtics would be the most explosive offensive team in the Leastern Conference. They would always have a scoring threat on the floor.
Sure, like any good team, they'd need role players to get the tough rebounds, take the charges and play good defense, but — honestly — when was the last time that a team had a trio like Garnett-Pierce-Allen?
Um... Jabbar-Magic-Worthy? McHale-Parish-Bird? That's how far back I have to travel. Let me know if there's been a better trio since.
As far as the ubiquitous question of "chemistry," if I'm Ainge, I'm not worried. Neither of the three players has reached an NBA Finals. They all realize the window is closing. They all are established players who don't need to prove their worth. All that's missing for them is a championship.
As long as the money's flowing into their bank accounts, I don't foresee any of them having qualms with not getting the ball enough.
That should be a non-worry for Ainge and his compatriots.
This is Ainge's big chance, his grand opportunity to make basketball relevant in Boston again.
Sure, it might seriously put a dent in the Celtics' future plans (where will they be in 2015 without Jefferson, Green and other draft picks?), but who even knows where the NBA will be then considering the state of the league right now.
No team should bypass the opportunity to win now. And if Ainge can somehow convince Garnett that Boston's winters aren't as cold as the weathermen say, Boston will be — just like that — a contender for an NBA title in 2008.