Rumor: Ray Allen, Paul Pierce Both Almost Traded At Deadline

We almost went WHERE?

On one hand, it appears (so far) that Danny Ainge made the right decision to keep the team in tact at the trade deadline. On the other hand, if rumors like these are to be believed, that wasn't his intent at the deadline.

Celtics' Big Three nearly split at trade deadline - Yahoo! Sports

As the NBA trade deadline lurched into its final hour a month ago, league sources say the call Ray Allen long feared had come: Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers was on the line, telling him he had been traded. Allen had been sent to the Memphis Grizzlies for a package including O.J. Mayo and a draft pick, and the Celtics' Big Three had come to a most brusque ending.

That trade actually ended up falling apart and a Pierce to New Jersey trade never worked out either.

Before the Big Three could make it past the trade deadline, Allen-to-the-Grizzlies had to fall apart and discussions on a deal that would have sent Paul Pierce to the New Jersey Nets for an expiring Mehmet Okur contract and a lottery pick never reached completion, league sources said.

As we learned from Bill Simmons, the Nets had the Pierce offer and the Gerald Wallace offer and went with the younger player.

Clearly this would have been a very different team had those trades happened as reported. We might have had a very interesting future lined up, but to assume that the present would be anything but an imploded rebuilding team would be folly. Of course, to be fair, at the time nobody knew just what kind of run this team would go on. Well, some of us knew they could, and hoped they would, but we didn't know.

I'm still happy with the result of not making the trades. But I have to admit it would be interesting walking into the summer with Rondo, OJ Mayo, 4 first round picks (assuming the Memphis deal included a 1st rounder) - one of which was a lottery pick, and tons of cap space. At that time, I would have at least understood the rationale behind blowing up the team. I'm just glad they didn't.

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