Before we get too caught up in what should only become All-KG-All-The-Time around here, lets pause for a moment to appreciate the departing Al Jefferson. He has been the most talented and most popular young Celtics star since Paul Pierce was drafted. Many believed in him to be our future, but in the end it turned out that he was simply Danny’s biggest trading chip used to land the biggest fish out there.
Boston fans are going to remember Al Jefferson. For every accomplishment he makes along the way, we will wonder what could have been. He has a chance to be better than Joe Johnson. In the right situation he could win more titles than Chauncey Billups. But it won’t be with the Celtics. You can be sure that he’ll sign a contract extension wherever he goes, and he might even get a close-to-max type of deal.
Part of me feels a little better knowing that he’ll be joining another former Celtic power forward in Minnesota, but I also wonder how long that will be the case. It is possible that this could be Kevin McHale’s last move in his (to put it delicately) troubled term as GM of the Timberwolves. I think the owner may be asking him to fall on his sword and hand off the rebuilding team to the next guy.
I am sorry to see Jefferson have to leave a team that would have included the two best players he’s ever played with (Pierce/Allen) only to have to join one with his old teammates Ricky Davis and Mark Blount. Jefferson took some not-so-subtle jabs at those two on their way out. If he’s lucky, McHale will be able to dump them off for picks and cap room as well.
If you are like me, you are going to root for Al Jefferson wherever he goes in this league, and hold out some private hope that someday he’ll return to us later in his career. He was always a likable young man and he has the talent to be great. I wish him the best and I will miss him. I’m sure I’m not alone.