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What We’ve Learned

Even if Iverson goes to another team, this exercise will not have been for nothing.  Below I list several things that we’ve already learned a lot about our team based on the information that’s come out.

Pecking Order

Sure, the team would never come out and tell you who is more valued than the others, but push did come to shove and the team hasn’t (so far) budged on keeping Pierce, Green, and Jefferson off the table.  Maybe they were available this offseason, maybe they will be available at a later date.  But right now, they are as close to “untouchable” as there is in this league.

Everyone else seems available at a price.  Gomes, Perk, West, Rondo, and Telfair probably round out the next tier of valued chips.  I used to think that Wally had more value than Theo because he had basketball skill as well.  It depends on the team buying though.  The Sixers don’t need to be good now, they’d rather get a shorter contract, so they value Theo higher than Wally, and would value an expiring contract even more.  It might be wise to hang onto Theo till the summer or next winter for that very reason.

Ainge is Eager, But Doc is Desperate

This is assuming the info Stephen A Smith provided is accurate.  He indicated that Ainge wanted to get it done, but wasn’t willing to part with Al Jefferson, but Doc Rivers was pushing for him to be included to get the deal done soon.

I can’t honestly say I’m surprised.  Coaches by their nature are win-now motivated, and a chance to add a Hall of Famer is probably worth losing Big Al to him.  However, this seems terribly short sighted to me.  Unless they had another deal in place to pick up a big man, what is the point in getting a couple great swing men with little to no big men to support them?

Pierce is Eager Too

Jesse Nunes questioned the locker room etiquette of Pierce openly pining for a trade since it would mean trading away several of his current teammates.  I see his point, but at the same time, Pierce has been nothing short of over-loyal to his teammates over the years.  I think if anything, Danny’s moves always bother him from a fundamental chemistry/brotherhood standpoint.  With that said, it is reality that these guys are trade commodities and I’m sure the reason Pierce signed on this summer was because he had a sense that the C’s were trying hard to get something done to help him on the court.  If welcoming the idea of getting AI means ruffling a few young feathers, so be it.

Jefferson is Motivated

Which leads us to our last point: As Shira points out, sometimes that motivation can be a good thing.  Jefferson has been playing with a little extra push in his game and openly admits that he is motivated by the trade talk.  Sure, you could ask why he wasn’t motivated enough before, but sometimes guys need a kick in the pants to get them going.  Pierce used dropping several draft slots to motivate him in his rookie year.  Perhaps this is what gets Jefferson going.

So maybe we won’t get Iverson, and maybe we won’t even find out about Iverson for a week or two or a couple of months.  But we have already started learning things about this team that we didn’t know just by observing the first 20 games.  So that alone makes this a valuable experience.