Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
My head says "hmmm" but my heart screams "NOOO!"
By now you know full well how I feel about Paul Pierce and the prospect of trading him away. No way, no how.
Still, the topic is a valid and logical one to discuss. The team has never been more primed to reboot than it is right now and if the right deal came along, you know that Danny Ainge would pull the trigger.
So someone had to write this article and I'm just glad it was Zach Lowe (of Grantland) and not me. You can't understand the full gist of it without reading it so I'll take this moment to urge you to go read it all. You can always come back here and comment - this post will still be here.
There are several ideas that he proposes but the general idea is that we need to get back a talented young player to help build around. He brings up names like Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, Harrison Barnes, Klay Thompson, and Eric Bledsoe to name a few. The gist behind all those trades is that we'd also have to pick up some longer term contracts, but in a rebuilding situation that is often the price of doing business.
One pair of ideas that he comes up with involves the Toronto Raptors. They are a slightly different variety in that they center around Andrea Bargnani - who is young-ish and talented, but also vastly overpaid. His first idea is Pierce and Bass for Bargnani and Calderon.
Boston gets a point guard who can hold the fort for the rest of the season, and a big man who might fit with Rondo. Remember that bit about how Boston lacks a Tyson Chandler–style hard roller among its bigs? It also lacks a power forward who can stretch the floor out to the 3-point line — a type of player who could blend nicely with Rondo's inside-out skills. One reason Terry has attempted so few shots via the pick-and-roll this season is that he doesn't have Nowitzki as a partner; opponents fear Nowitzki's jumper so deeply, they have their big men stay attached to him on pick-and-rolls, opening a lane for Dallas guards.
He also pitches a variation involving Lowry and Gray instead of Calderon (and his expiring contract).
I'm submitting all of this largely without comment because I can't comment on it rationally. All of Lowe's ideas have logical merit to them but I'm not convinced because my heart won't let me consider them.
If I wake up on a chilly day in February and find out that Danny Ainge has traded my Binky for some package of players like Lowe lays out, I'll have to man up and deal with that. Life will go on and I'll still be a Celtics fan. In time I might even be convinced that it was the "right" thing to do for the team (depending on the deal). But I can't say that I'll like it or look forward to it.
Paul Pierce should retire as a Celtic. And that's all I'm really prepared to think about at this point in time. But since I know many of you will want to discuss Lowe's ideas, here they are.