As we get closer to next Thursday's trade deadline, the rumor mill will be spinning fast enough to make anyone dizzy. So let's try to anchor ourselves to reality with a little look back at what Danny has done before to see what he's more or less likely to do going forward.
Buy talent first, then worry about fitting it together. Danny has traded for Ricky Brown, Chris Mihm, Wally Szerbiak, Raef Lafrenz and Sebastian Telfair. He's then traded Ricky Brown, Chris Mihm, Wally Szerbiak, Raef Lafrentz and Sebastian Telfair to find better pieces to the puzzle. He's also done a good job of acquiring talent in the draft both to play for the Celtics or to shop elsewhere: Rondo, Kendrick Perkins, Avery Bradley, Tony Allen, Delonte West, Glen Davis, Al Jefferson, even guys like Kedrick Brown and Luke Harangody were able to be moved for other pieces. If there's one area where Danny is a gambler it's on big men; trading for Michael Olowokandi and drafting Semih Erden. But even then, he doesn't seem to risk much.
Buy bodies, not cap space. Danny seems less interested in shuttling off players or draft picks that could become players for cap space. Boston is not a destination location for big name free agents, so Danny isn't chucking everything to make room for a LeBron or Melo or the like. Speaking of free agents.
Free agents fill in the gaps; they aren't the foundation. Looking at the Championship team and beyond, Danny has used free agents to compliment the roster. James Posey, Eddie House, Sam Cassell, PJ Brown, Stephon Marbury and Rasheed Wallace were seen as attempts to complete the puzzle. Also, if Danny is going to bring an older or end of career player it will be via free agency. And even then Danny might be able to flip them (Sam Cassell got turned into a 2015 second round Sacramento draft pick).
Danny grew up under Red Auerbach. Red hated trading bodies for draft picks because it hurt morale and he always wanted to have continuity from one championship team to the next. That second is why I don't think you'll see Rondo get shipped out anytime soon.
So what does that mean for the deadline? I would doubt that Danny will sell players or picks for cap space, ever. Big name free agency is just too chancy for his blood. If he can acquire more picks, he will, but again he doesn't seem to like voiding his roster of talent for picks. Look for trades where Danny gives up mid-career talent for younger talent. The Celtics will look to acquire draft picks but not without getting someone back in return, too.
And any deal that sounds too good to be true for Boston... probably is.