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Danny Wants His Baby Back?

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For all the free agents and trade partners the Celtics have been linked to, the most likely option continues to be that the 2012 Celtics look a lot like the 2011 Celtics. At the very least, Danny seems to be trying his hardest to get The Round Mound Who Doesn't Rebound back into the fold:

Ainge Wastes No Time In Pursuit Of Big Baby - A. Sherrod Blakely - Comcast SportsNet

On the first day of free agency in which team officials can speak directly with players, one of the first calls Danny Ainge made was to unrestricted free agent Glen Davis. . . . The fact that Ainge reached out to Davis so early was well received by Davis' camp.

"It's very important," John Hamilton, Davis' agent, told CSNNE.com. "It shows Danny and the Celtics appreciate the contributions he has made to the club, and are open to seeing if they can continue to relationship that started four years ago."

Ainge is not alone. . . . Two league sources on Monday said that a number of Davis' teammates, including Paul Pierce, have reached out to Davis in an effort to convince him to return to Boston. . . . But re-signing Davis won't be easy.

Blakely goes on to state that Detroit may be a suitor for Baby, and suggests that they could be willing to spend up to their entire MLE on him. This appears to be speculation, but let's discuss: is BBD worth a four year contract and/or $5 million per season?

Davis is a valuable player. He knows the system, and he can play both power forward and center. He has been a rotation-caliber player on a championship contender, and for large stretches last year, he looked like a Sixth Man Of The Year Candidate. He can help the Celtics in 2012, and with extremely limited financial resources (only the $3 million Mini-Mid Level), he may be the best we can get.

However, I can't support offering Davis 4 years, $20 million. It's not the money, it's the years. I would gladly give Baby a one year, $5 million contract. Anything more than that, however, cuts into our cap room. As valuable as he may be as a rotation player on a contender, Davis is not a building block for the future. We can't afford to have Glen Davis taking up a $5 million chunk of our cap space as we enter our rebuilding years.

The unfortunate thing is, I can't think of any contract that really makes sense for both parties. Perhaps a one year, $6 million deal, which would allow Davis one last run in Boston while giving him a larger 2012 salary than he could get with the MLE. However, the only multi-year option that really makes much sense for the Celtics is one for around $3 million or less in average annual value, and Baby should be able to do significantly better than that on the open market.

I think the best option for the Celtics continues to be to move Baby in a sign-and-trade, either for a piece that can help us long-term, or for a pick and a trade exception. To sign him to a contract that hurts our cap flexibility would be counter-productive.