…and where that leaves the Celtics, by Jacob, co-founder of Curave:
Losing a basketball player to an injury is never fun, but losing a player as controversial and respected as Rajon Rondo puts a tremendous spike into the game of basketball. But while other teams will continue to thrive, the Boston Celtics are now stuck in a very precarious situation.
What does this mean for the rest of the team?
Danny Ainge, the GM of the Celtics, now has to ask himself that question repeatedly as he looks at what his team is left with. Despite their iconic win yesterday against the Miami Heat, don’t think that these Celtics are going to make a run at a championship this year.
More so, the team is only getting older and the team’s two other stars, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, will be 37 and 36, respectfully, at the start of the 2013-2014 season. Garnett has repeatedly said that if he can’t play as well as he thinks he should, he’ll retire. Paul Pierce was left off the roster for the All-Star for the first time since 2002—except when he was injured in the 2007 season.
This is the same team that, before winning against the Heat, had lost six straight. This is the same team that is clinging to the 8th spot in the playoffs. Even if they were to make it into the playoffs, does anyone really expect them to beat the Heat, Knicks, Nets, or Bulls in a best-of-seven?
So obviously the natural choice is to break up the team, right? What else can really be done but to break up the team, get whatever pieces are possible, and start rebuilding for the 2013-2014 season? Or even the 2014-2015 season (since Rondo may be a bit rusty next season coming back from the injury)?
If that’s what the Celtics are looking to do they’ll be very hard pressed to make any sort of deal that will “rebuild the team.” There are no Kevin Durants or Derrick Roses in the upcoming NBA draft. Trading star players for mediocre picks can hurt a team for years as those players develop.
But that begs the question: What are they fighting for? Is it worth getting nothing in exchange for these players just to try and be the 8th seed?
I say yes. I say, unequivocally, yes. But that wasn’t my opinion yesterday when I asked to write this column. Yesterday I thought this column would be filled with options for trades. I thought I’d present trade options.
But then I realized what team I was writing about. These are the Boston Celtics, the team that has won 17 Championships. These are the Celtics that have people on Twitter screaming when Paul Pierce takes his famous curl around a screen for a pull up jumper … and nails it. These are the Celtics that will continue to fight night in and night out.
“I’m looking to give the guys we have a chance,” Danny Ainge said today to reporters.
He’s entirely correct with that. These guys may not be a Championship team, but that doesn’t mean they won’t fight. And I can tell you as a guy who roots for another team in the East this Boston team still scares me. At the end of the day, these are the Boston Celtics. They won’t give up … ever. So I say, fight. Fight, fight, fight. Fight for Rondo. Fight for Boston. And get into the playoffs. Because when that happens, things are going to get real fun.
About the Author: Jacob is the co-founder of Curave (http://www.curave.com/nba), a morning newsletter that sends out the best content from around the web all about the NBA. He is currently running a contest where he is giving away a Boston Celtics print commemorating the 1986 Championship. (http://curave.com/nba/nba-curave-contest-win-print-1/)