I don’t always take trade rumors at face value. But if you take the latest “Danny Ainge wanted to swap Rajon Rondo and Jeff Green for Kendrick Perkins and Russell Westbrook after the 2011 playoffs” rumor as the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God, faith could be shaken and beliefs could be altered. (ESPN)
ESPN’s Chris Broussard dug up yet another interesting Celtics tidbit for us this evening, one that casts last season’s Kendrick Perkins-for-Jeff Green trade in an entirely new light.
After last season’s playoffs, the Celtics offered Rajon Rondo and Green to Oklahoma City for Russell Westbrook and Perkins, sources told Broussard. The Celtics, looking for another scorer who can create his own offense, thought Westbrook might be available after his erratic postseason play. But Oklahoma was not interested in the deal.
Let’s assume this rumor is true and take a look at the timeline:
1) The Celtics are favorites in the East, if not the entire NBA, and destroying everyone on the schedule.
2) Danny Ainge, at the last minute before the trade deadline, swaps Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson for Nenad Krstic and Jeff Green. We later hear the trade was made for financial reasons — the C’s did not believe they could afford to re-sign Perkins after the season.
3) The Celtics fall apart after acquiring Green. Green, despite all his obvious natural athleticism, fails to produce in any one aspect of the game. He does not score, rebound, or defend particularly well, and the Celtics collapse during the second half of the season, ultimately bowing to the Miami Heat in five games.
4) Fuck being frugal. Ainge offers to reacquire Perkins (and his new, $9 million per season contract), except this time he also proposes to (slightly) downgrade from Rajon Rondo to Russell Westbrook.
5) Sam Presti hangs up the phone, chuckling to himself.
6) A few months later, the trade offer resurfaces. My period of grieving goes something like this: I spend three hours crying about Perk (“I just miss his scowl, mom”), two hours trying to Google Ainge’s address so I can egg his house, two more hours trying to ponder the question: “wait, Rondo IS better than Westbrook, right?”, and then I return to crying about Perk until I fall asleep.
Unfortunately for Ainge, there is no reset button in real life.