Thursday, March 8, 2012
Celtics don't expect big trade
Boston Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge said Thursday he wasn't close to making any trades as the March 15 deadline nears.
"Nothing is even close. As of right now we have nothing close to happening," Ainge said on Boston sports radio station WEEI. "It's not from a lack of trying. Not necessarily to make major changes but to make small changes at least.
"But we still have a long time before March 15 to see if we can do something to help our team."
Earlier in the day, coach Doc Rivers echoed that sentiment, telling WEEI he didn't expect any big trade and "wouldn't be shocked if nothing came down."
Rajon Rondo's name has come up in recent trade rumors but both Ainge and Rivers said recently the team wasn't shopping its star point guard.
If the Celtics don't make a major trade, they potentially face a big rebuilding process in the offseason. The contracts of Kevin Garnett ($21 million), Ray Allen ($10 million) and Jermaine O'Neal ($6 million) are coming off the books, freeing up plenty of cap room for Boston to lure free agents to come play with Paul Pierce and Rondo.
"We have some good pieces," Ainge said. "We have some players still under contract that we really like on the roster, more than we did back in the 2003-04 era [when Ainge first arrived in Boston]. Completely rebuild? I'm not sure we need to do that."
Rivers acknowledged that his roster could look entirely different this summer.
"We are going to make changes," Rivers told Colin Cowherd on "The Herd." "I don't think we have to make them this trade deadline. We saw this coming. Danny Ainge is a great GM and we all saw it coming. We know this summer we'll be able to get under the cap, we'll be able to do a lot of moves. This could be one of the best drafts of the last 10-15 years. There's time.
"When you look at Miami, you say 'Whoa, they're an amazing basketball team.' Are they beatable? We'll find out when the playoffs start."