Thursday, March 1, 2012


With All-Star weekend over and trade rumors swirling as the deadline is in sight it is time to take a look at what is out there being talked about and what makes sense for some teams.

Lets start out west in Los Angeles. The Lakers find themselves in a very interesting position as we begin March. They are within a game of the Clippers for the Pacific division lead, which would mean home court in the first round of the playoffs and a potential 2nd round matchup against the Spurs. Do you regret the way you handled the Lamar Odom situation yet LA?  Magic Johnson said it best when speaking about the Pau Gasol situation when he stated that little Buss needed to start representing the Lakers properly as a top notch organization and knock off this back and forth bull shit which Kobe quite accurately pointed out before the all-star break. The only deal I make if I am LA is one that brings in Dwight Howard. If you can’t get to the conference finals with Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol leading you in a wide-open western conference I am not sure what to tell you. Maybe they picked the wrong head coach? As much as we like to mock Gasol at times he is still one of the best bigs in the game, not a good sign when his front office treats him like a rubber chicken.

It is interesting that with so many teams in the west thinking they can make a run that the rumors surrounding the other so called contenders are relatively quiet, for now. While Golden State is improved under first year coach Mark Jackson they are far from contenders and moving one of their backcourt pieces seems to be in the works. Monta Ellis to Orlando? The Magic are in a crucial two week stretch right now. Trade Dwight Howard or find a way to bring in a suitable piece to keep him in town. I think he is a goner. As a Celtics fan the best thing he could do in terms of winning next season and over the long run is finishing the season in Orlando, taking a trip to Boston, have dinner with Doc, Danny, and the big 4 (that is if Rondo is still a Celtic, I’ll get to that) and sign with the Celtics. The Celtics can then bring back Allen and KG on cheaper two-year deals and you have one heck of a starting five with a solid bench already in place with every single free agent role player hungry for a ring wanting to be a Celtic. Sound familiar? Before you ask what am I smoking look at the landscape of the league and the combination of players both talent wise and position wise you must bring together in order to win a ring. You need an inside presence on both ends. You need top notch team defense, you need rebounding and you need chemistry. Check, check, check and CHECK. Unfortunately it is not likely to happen because…..

The Celtics appear to be ready to make a move involving Rondo. Some say they are “shopping” him, some say they are “fielding” offers. The one deal that is swirling is a Rondo for Steph Curry swap with the Warriors. I can’t see it happening simply because Curry can’t stay on the court. While he can shoot the heck out of the ball what good will it do if he joins the list of Celtics who have been in and out of the line up this season. One thing about Rondo is it takes a dislocated elbow to sideline him, oh wait, he came back in the game with that. What did sideline him recently was a two game suspension for aggressively passing the ball to a referee who was clearly asking for the ball from Rondo, but as we know #9 has quite a temper and to say he had some spicy brown mustard on that pass is an understatement. Rondo and Doc Rivers have reportedly been in some verbal spats on and off the court. The only way I see Ainge moving Rondo is if enables the Celtics some how, some way to make a deep run in this postseason, again, not likely, but either was the 2010 title run. Depression officially setting in. 

Speaking of the post season the Knicks are now in thick of the eastern conference playoff race thanks to Jeremy Lin, the additions of JR Smith, Steve Novak and Baron Davis, oh and guys actually playing hard and as a team each and every night. While Lin gets the headlines along with Melo and Amare it has been the presence of Tyson Chandler that remains a constant for the Knicks this season. It is all about his presence, as Chandler is constantly the voice and the example that all of a sudden is being matched by everyone around him. While it took Linsanity to get everyone moving it is Chandler who brought the same thing to the champion Mavericks last year. In a sit down interview I had with Chandler he spoke in depth about his decision to turn himself into this kind of player (You will be able to catch this interview in a 6 part series this month at

The race for the Atlantic Division title between the Celtics, Knicks and now fading 76ers is crucial as the winner gets the third seed with home court in the opening round of the playoffs.

 Other rumors swirling: Michael Beasley and Lamar Odom are both close to being moved as the Celtics are being mentioned in both situations and the Nets in regards to Odom as well. Odom joining the Celtics would be welcomed right now as Jermaine O’Neal is out, again, and Odom’s playoff experience, versatility and ability to rebound would be of great help. Beasley has matured but the T-Wolves love Derrick Williams and Beasley is not exactly thrilled with coming off of the bench. Stay tuned on that one. 

The Nets need to make a decision when it comes to Deron Williams. He is too good to let walk, at the same time the Nets must get back at least a borderline all-star and a young talent if they are going to deal him. I wonder if they have called the Celtics about a Rondo for Williams packaged swap or the Knicks about a Lin package. If you are the Nets you’ve got to explore every option at this point even if it is within your own division or own city (area) if you know I what I am sayin, which local Knick maven John Mac does. What I am not buying is that the Celtics would trade Rondo to the Knicks unless they are getting a combination of Chandler and Lin in return, which we know is not happening.

The Kendrick Perkins trade continues to haunt my basketball soul.

“We may be through with the past but the past ain’t through with us.”

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