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Posted By Warren Shaw On Feb 24 2011 @ 7:29 pm In Boston Celtics | 2 Comments
So as the number 1 team in the Eastern Conference with wins over every potential title contender this season, the Boston Celtics trade one of their biggest defensive specialist in Kendrick Perkins. The Celtics also made 2 other deals that returned zero able bodies as Thursday’s trade deadline closed in. What in the name of leprechauns are they doing? Here is what inexplicable went down:
Deal 1: Kendrick Perkins & Nate Robinson (good riddance) to Oklahoma City for Nenad Kristic and Jeff Green
Deal 2: Semih Erden and Luke Harangody to Cleveland for a 2nd pick in 2013 (baffling)
Deal 3: Marquis Daniels to Sacramento for cash considerations (somewhat understandable)
Speculation is that Boston will pursue Troy Murphy, assuming he is bought out, to help fill out the now very light roster. Did the Knicks acquisition of Carmelo Anthony scare us? Does the Celtics front office think the first half of the season was fool’s gold? Why break this team up, become smaller and less physical with the Heat, Bulls, and Magic all in the way of a potential return to the finals.
Without Perkins the Celtics become an almost minuscule team especially with both O’neals still out with injuries. The moves are almost maddening considering all of Doc River’s boasts of how the starting five of Rondo, Allen, Pierce, Garnett, and Perkins have never lost a playoff series. Remember Perkins missed game 7 of the NBA Finals last year and many believe that had he played the Lakers don’t get anywhere near 23 offensive rebounds to steal the championship away from Boston. I too am of that same belief and can’t for the life of me figure out why Perkins was traded today. So let me speculate.
Perhaps Perk is still hurt. He was slated to miss his next 3 games due to a sprained MCL and has looked a step slow since returning. While high flying has never been a part of his game we have watched his shots being routinely blocked by guards this season as he takes his time to gather for layups on the post. His inability to rise quickly and dunk the ball have been noticeable. Additionally he was not been able to add range on his jumper. There are times with both he and Rondo on the floor that defenses double the other Celtics leaving Rondo and Perk wide open to clank shots off the rim.
Another possibility for his exodus could be early discussion over his contract extension. If this was the case, I do not find it to be a credible reason to trade him for the likes of Kristic and Green. Playing out the season would have made more sense and who knows when or if there will be a next season with the league planning for a lockout this summer.
Whatever the reason, Perkins is now a member of the now very dangerous Oklahoma City Thunder. While Jeff Green is a tough young player who can fit into the defensive schemes of the Celtics but Kristic is a defensive liability. Yes he is more offensively capable but a great rebounder he is not, and in no way shape or form is he as tough or as competitive as Perkins was. I would have preferred a package of Serge Ibaka and Thabo Sefolosha or something similar. (Green and Ibaka would not be realistic)
Yes we say good bye to Robinson, Daniels, Erden, and Harangody as well but none of their losses will be felt as much as Perkins. Celtic fans….we are in trouble!
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