The Celtics will figure out where they stand in this year’s NBA draft tomorrow, but before then we have been left with speculation on what this team will look like in a mere few months. One rumor that has been floating around the internet today is the idea of bringing star forward Kevin Love to Boston.
Kevin Love has told the Timberwolves, who he currently plays for, that he wants out of Minnesota via trade or he will leave in free agency in the summer of 2015. This leaves Minnesota scrambling as they want to get something in return when Love inevitably leaves. Love would bring a strong post presence to Boston. Love averaged 26 points and 12 rebounds this season for the Timberwolves, and has averaged 19 points and 12 rebounds over his 6 year career. But Love is not just a post threat and a beast on the boards, he can also step out and knock down the three. Love is shooting over .300 percent from behind the arc in his career.
Now how does a player like Kevin Love fit into the Celtics rebuilding regime? Well its quite simple really, if Kevin Love comes to Boston the rebuilding regime will end. By that I mean the Celtics will become immediate finals contenders with Love. Love is a star player who you can build a team around. Pair him up with Rajon Rondo and you have a solid 1-2 punch. And if the Celtics acquire Love, you will have to imagine they will pursue a big free agent this summer to build a new “big 3”.
The Celtics will likely have to give up a lot in order to receive Love’s services. This deal will most likely require the Celtics to give up either Jared Sullinger, Avery Bradley, or Kelly Olynyk, along with a few picks the Celtics have acquired over the past few seasons. Now this may seem like a steep price to pay but Kevin Love is a superstar, none of the three players I listed above are that, or will ever be that. The deal I believe will happen is Sullinger, Bradley, and the Celtics 2014 draft pick which they acquired when they sent Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to Brooklyn. If the Celtics do indeed dish off Bradley and do not end up with a top 3 pick in this years draft, expect the Celtics to draft Dante Exum from Australia with their lottery pick.
As a Celtics fan, I would find it astounding if Doc did not get a warm welcome tonight. Doc took over as the Celtics coach in 2004 and helped rebuild a franchise that needed a serious overhaul. He led the team to a Championship in 2008 and coached the Celtics for 9 years. So what if he was reluctant to step into another rebuilding process, you cannot hate him for that. He helped create a team that was taken apart by Danny Ainge, not him. So when he was faced with another long rebuilding process, he left. And he really didn’t even leave, he was traded. He most likely would of left anyways but still that should factor into this as well. He led the Celtics to one of their best seasons throughout this storied franchise in 2008 and it would be an absolute disgrace if he is boo’ed in his return to Boston.
Prediction: Blake will be to much to handle for Sully, Clippers win by at least 10.
So the people who were saying the Celtics should take should probably go into the back row and sit down and keep their mouths shut for the rest of the season. The Celtics are 8-12, fourth in the Eastern Conference, and FIRST in the Atlantic Division. After an 0-4 start this team has been putting it together and they look like they can play with the big boys in the East, and they have. This is a team that no one should sleep on, and in the near future, no one will be.
The Celtics have gone 3-2 over their past 5 games, including a win over a Charlotte team that will also most likely be the playoffs this year. They also beat Kyrie Irving and the Cleveland Cavaliers and finally got off the chopping block against the lowly Milwaukee Bucks. The Celts lost to a strong Grizzlies team by 7 and somehow lost to the 3-13 Bucks (Played them back to back).
Over the past 5 games, this starting lineup has come alive, led by Jeff Green and Jamal Crawford. Jeff Green has scored an average of 21 points over the past five games, including a 31 point performance against the Cavs. Anyone who still doubts this guy can not be a lethal weapon on offense needs to get their head out of the gutter. This guy can play, and he can be an elite player in this league. Jordan Crawford has been averaging 16 points and 6 assists in the past 5 games.
Jared Sullinger is starting to solidify himself as a solid center and a building block for this team. He can play defense, score points, and can even hit the occasional outside shot. Brandon Bass and Sully have are establishing themselves as a solid front court option and could create nightmares for teams with a weak front court (I’m looking at you Miami). This is a strong Celtics front court, and it will only get stronger as Olynyk will be returning from a sprained right ankle soon.
The only discouraging news from the Celtics as of late is that Danny Ainge said Rondo “is not close” to returning. The Celtics need Rondo to have a chance of making a run in the Eastern Conference Playoffs.
The Celtics take on the Denver Nuggets (11-7) at the TD Bank North Garden. The Nuggets are a solid, balanced team all around. But the Celtics are hot right now and I like them winning this game.