The Celtics now have at least the pieces in place to start forming a solid bench. Nate Robison is the backup point guard scoring threat. Marquis Daniels is the backup wing to give rest to Ray and Paul. Glen Davis is the big man backup. If the Celtics sign another vet minimum guy and give some minutes to rookie Avery Bradley then they might be able to get through the first half of the season with a respectable record.
(Side note: with all the players returning, it may only be a matter of time before we re-sign Scal!)
Danny Ainge still has the option of trading Rasheed Wallace's contract for some immediate help, but thus far he hasn't found the kind of deal he's looking for. When it comes down to it, that isn't that surprising. Put yourself in the shoes of teams looking to shed salary. With all the sign-and-trades that just happened, there are plenty of trade exceptions to go around. There are still teams out there with cap room to absorb contracts in exchange for a trade exception and maybe even a draft pick.
In addition, the Cavs are dangling Delonte West who has a partially guaranteed contract that can be waived at the expense of just $500K. Taking Sheed from the Celtics means you still have to go through the process of buying out his contract. Even if the Celtics toss in $3M (which isn't a given) you might be able to get a better deal elsewhere.
So if the Celtics aren't going to maximize the value of Sheed's contract this offseason, maybe they should just hold onto it for the time being.
In February teams will already be out of the running for the playoffs and the pressure to shed salary before the new CBA hits will start to increase. Fewer teams will have the cap space to make unbalanced trades and Sheed's contract would be in higher demand than it is now.
Danny will also have half a season to review our roster and get a better feel for what our needs are. In addition, by then all the guys we just signed will be eligible to be traded if we wanted to. For example, if Avery somehow wins the backup point job, Ainge could package Robinson with Sheed and pick up a sizable contract in return.
I suppose there is also an outside chance that the Celtics could simply hold onto him and negotiate a buyout of their own. But I would sooner imagine seeing him lace them up and try to give us one more year (and I still put the odds of that just above nil).
There is still a very good chance that Ainge might find a deal that suits his liking and pulls the trigger. But if he can't find the perfect deal then the logical move would be to wait patiently for the right opportunity to present itself. If everything goes according to plan, the team could coast through the first few months and add Kendrick Perkins and another player via trade for the stretch run. And as we saw last year, you never know how far this team can go when they are healthy and reasonably well rested for the playoffs.