First of all, to Kendrick Perkins: Thank you for everything. You will be missed dearly.
Secondly, what in the world just happened? To sum up, here's the net puts and takes:
These deals free up 3 roster spots and sets us up for some positive moves in the future. That, however, doesn't necessarily pave the way for the run for Banner 18 this year. A lot will depend on what Danny can find in free agency.
Troy Murphy goes from being a nice-to-get guy to being near-critical to get. We now have a dire Need 4 Sheed, regardless of if he's in shape or not. (update: or not, it seems the C's have no intention of bringing him in) Who else is going to pop up on the free agent market? Nobody knows at this point, so it is too soon to tell. What we can tell is that this is a big, big gamble by Danny.
Granted, before we panic too much, it is worth remembering that we have 4 All Stars in Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, and Kevin Garnett. Not to mention Big Baby playing inspired basketball. But our starting center right now is either Krstic or Big Baby until one or both of the O'Neal brothers returns from injury. Delonte West (who has played exactly 6 games this year) is our backup point guard with a head nod to Avery Bradley.
Of course everything hinges on Jeff Green. Is he worth it? Was it worth giving up our starting center and defensive anchor (behind KG) to get a backup forward? He's not even a true small forward. He's more of a combo forward that might be better suited to play the 4.
So, what's the scouting report on Green anyway? Reading Kelly Dwyer, I'm not exactly encouraged:
On an open roster, we don't know where Jeff Green plays. He's a poor rebounder, an awful defender at the power forward slot, and he doesn't do enough offensively to warrant a look at small forward. And yet, this doesn't stop him from shooting nearly four three-pointers a game, despite making only 30 percent of his looks from out there. His shot selection has been an issue since his rookie year, and it's still hard to tell, exactly, where he fits in this league. Other than a guy that seems to luck into getting big minutes and plenty of shot opportunities.
Oof. I could have done without that. Hopefully he can live up to the potential that made him the 5th overall pick in 2007. Hopefully he can fit into Doc's defensive system and contribute on that end. Hopefully the guys we pick up in free agency make the net impact of this deal swing to our favor and everything works out fine.
Hopefully. But as of now, I think we are well justified to be more than a little skeptical.
You better know what you're doing Danny.