Danny's words are ringing in my ears. "I have a lot of work to do."
He hasn't been shy in the past. He's (thankfully) never listened to the "experts" on how to do his job. Something tells me that this offseason is going to be no different. While everyone is looking one way, there's a great chance that he'll be looking the other way.
What if Danny decides that the future is now? What if he looks at his roster and decides that it is crossroads time? What if he's faced with "Go for it now or build for the near future?"
If he really felt that way, I'm pretty sure I know what direction he'd go. I think Walker would be encouraged to find a sign-and-trade deal or maybe just let go for the payroll savings. I think we'd thank Gary for his time and tell him to enjoy the Pacific. I think that Blount and Raef would be available at a reasonable price. And here's the cherry on top... I think he would pull the trigger on a Paul Pierce trade.
Do I want any of this to happen? No, I don't. I'm hoping that he and Doc can figure out a way to build for the future while maintaining a competitive and even championship driven veteran team of players I've grown to love. I hope reasonable deals can be worked out and players can mesh properly with the system Danny and Doc are continually implementing.
But I'm also a realist. If Danny is set against having players that don't fit into his style of play, then Paul, Antoine, Gary and the other vets on this team might not ever really fit the specifications he requires. Plus, if you are going to sell high, now would be the time to do it.
With Walker and Gary up after this year, the flexibility will be at an alltime high. If either or both are resigned, we'll have to live with those deals till they expire or are moved. Need we go any further than Mark Blount to see how quickly buyer's remorse can set in?
Now before you dismiss my theory, remember that while we are still in the drivers seat in the Atlantic, there is a lot of time between now and the end of the season. The Sixers are only 3 games behind us again. We all have legitimate hopes of reaching the Eastern Conference Finals, but what if another first round burnout is the actual result?
I'm not saying any of this will or even should happen. I'm just saying that Danny always has several contingency plans. You can bet that this plan is among the options. I'm just not sure if its plan A, B, Z, or "last resort."