Indeed, at 11:50 a.m. Saturday, a Mavs source advised us that the rights to Jet had been renounced. Meanwhile, Terry was in Boston conducting a press conference … even though he hadn’t technically signed his new three-year deal worth about $5 mil a season with the Celtics. At 12:44 p.m. we asked another question of another Mavs official and got an answer that on the surface seemed to collide with the “renouncing” statement. “Don’t think so,” said the source of a Boston sign-and-trade. “But we’re always open to ideas.’
What the Mavs renounced was Jet’s Bird rights (the special ability to sign him and special ability to offer more money) — not the player himself. The Mavs, as we write this, still have the ability to sign him, via another method. And as their own free agent they can use him in a sign-and-trade if they have a way to do the “sign” part of the process. So we believe they still have their eyes on a sign-and-trade … but not a transaction with just Boston … and not just one that brings back Celtics junk … but instead brings back a prize in Jose Calderon.
Ainge is more relentless than I used to be while shooting buffaloes in the computer game Oregon Trail. He’s attempting to parlay one or two minor assets into the magical creation of cap space that would help the Celtics acquire another bench stud, quite possibly Courtney Lee — and Ainge even seems to be getting closer to reaching his dreams.