In response to Steve Kerr's article "Ainge Has a Point"
From your article Steve: "Despite the desires of the players, coaches and fans, history shows that Boston would be better off in the lottery."
Really? Does it Steve? I seem to recall you bringing up the good fortunes of the Spurs in drafting Tim Duncan. Happen to remember who had (and still do, I believe) the highest ever probability (33%) of securing the #1 pick that season?
I'll give you a hint: It wasn't easy being green that year either.
There were loud whispers of the C's "tanking" for draft position that year also. As I recall, the fruit of that draft turned out to be Chauncy Billups (who turned into Kenny Anderson mid season), and perennial wanna-be, Ron Mercer. Neither is still with Boston and neither has ever or will ever be the franchise player that Duncan is.
Losing is never in the best interest of any franchise, let along the Boston Celtics. Sure, it may bring about a quick fix superstar, but where does that leave the integrity of the franchise?
Boston has a proud and illustrious tradition. Aside from the Iceman years, San Antonio never had much to celebrate and LeBron is the only real thing Cavs fans have ever had reason to get excited about (sorry Brad Doherty).
No offense to those franchises, but they didn't have far to stoop to tank. Even in these hard days in the Celtic Nation, the large majority of fans become nautious at the thought of losing for the sake of getting into the ever unpredicatable lottery.
The Celtics have 3 possible first round picks this year. If Dannyboy needs leverage to get a trade done or to move up, he'll find a way to use those picks and/or current roster spots to make it happen.
If Danny's long term plan was predicated on the Celtics losing, then Danny needs to revamp his long term plan. He can gut this team all he wants, but it'll never quash the desire of the fans, players and coaches to win. This season has proven that already, regardless of the playoff outcome.
It's something that I'm afraid isn't easily understood by those outside the Celtic Nation. Celtic Pride is not a catch word and the Nation will not settle for anything less than 100% from everyone involved.
In ending, I can say unequivocally, that Danny Ainge's only true, proven mistake thus far has been his unfortunate remarks in Florida that echo the sentiments laid forth in your article: that it would probably be in the best interests of the Franchise to lose.
As President of Basketball Operations in the NBA's Banner Town, you shouldn't even think that, let alone be foolish enough to say it out loud.
Thank you for taking the time to write this very honest article on the Celtics. It's not the same regurgitated garbage that alot of writers are putting forth these days, if they even take the time to report on the C's. For that, you have the gratitude of a thankful Celtic Nation. Most of us don't agree with the premise set forth, but understand where the position comes from and the tenets behind it.
We also have little doubt, that as you've so eliquently pointed out, Dannyboy has to sit back and just let the desires of his players dictate how this plays out for us. It may indeed go against what his head tells him is best. However, it's more than likely that Dannyboy's heart is more proudly pumping green blood through his veins, than it has in a while. He has to be both happy and proud that despite the odds being stacked against them, this team is persevering. Something that has always been a key trait of Danny Ainge his whole life.