clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Are the Celtics tanking or not? I don't care

New, comments

Whatever and ever amen.

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Fan A: "The Celtics should be losing every game for a better draft position!"

Fan B: "But they can't develop a culture of losing and tanking doesn't work often enough to make it worth it."

Me: Wake me when this debate is over please.

Don't get me wrong.  I'm happy to let you have the debate.  The more comments the merrier.  Just don't expect me to wade into the mud and start slinging it around.

I've been there, done that, got the t-shirt.  I was sick of the topic the week after we traded Pierce and Garnett but here we are 19 months later and on and on it goes.

Obviously nobody sane is claiming that the players and coaches should be trying to throw games.  So it all kind of boils down to either rooting against your own team or simply rooting for Danny Ainge to move more veterans for picks.

To each his own on the first one.  People root how they want to root and there's no accomplishment pin for being "a true fan" (whatever that means).  As for the second one, I say "just wait, more is coming."  If Danny can find any kind of value at all for these spare parts at the deadline he'll move them.  If not, then he'll be happy to buy them out or let them expire at the end of the season.

The players and coaches, meanwhile, will continue to do what they do and occasionally that's going to result in them winning games.  It probably won't be enough to sneak into the playoffs but given the East I guess you never know.  If that happens, it gives us a lower draft position and lower odds of finding another quality young player in June.  On the other hand, all the young players will have a taste of valuable playoff experience.

On the other hand, if the Celtics manage to lose the rest of their games they STILL might not pass the Knicks, Sixers, and Wolves in the tanking standings.

And if we're in the lottery, there's these silly ping pong balls that ping and pong around and randomly determine your draft position anyway.  Those mean pings haven't exactly been kind to us in the past.  That means nothing to what they will do in the future, but I can't put my hope in them any more.  If they bounce right this time, great.  If not, oh well.

So to sum up, we're talking about the percent chance that we will end up with a record that allows us a percent chance at a draft position allowing us to make a pick on a player that has a percent chance of being good.

Forgive me but I ...can't ...bring ....myself ...to ....care.

What will be will be and no amount of hand wringing will make it happen the way we want it to.

To me it is more important that Danny Ainge does his job right and maximizes the assets that he has.  He has a hard job to do.  He has to pick up as many future assets as he can in the next 3 weeks.  He has to evaluate the current mix of talent and decide who are keepers and who are better off as trade bait.  He has to figure out who might be available via free agency and trade this summer and fit all of that together into a team that actually makes sense on a Brad Stevens coached roster.

Yes, draft position is an important factor, but so much of it is completely tied to luck that it is irrelevant to any single game on the NBA schedule.

So while I'll watch the standings with interest and I'll play Chad Ford's silly lottery simulator and all that.  I just won't be getting into any of your heated debates about the pros and cons of tanking.  Just thought you'd like to know.