That’s a question the Celtics are going to have to ask themselves this off-season, according to the always plugged-in Marc Spears. Baby is a restricted free agent, meaning the C’s have the right to match any team’s offer. There will be a few teams looking to spend money this off-season (Detroit and Oklahoma City being the most prominent), but they seem to have other targets in mind. Given the state of the economy, I doubt any team is going to throw a $3 million offer sheet at Baby just to force the Celtics to pony up the a lot of money to keep him. Perhaps the C’s will be able to sign him on the cheap?
As for whether he’s worth $3 million or $5 million, that seems about right. The average NBA player salary is just over $5 million, and a bunch of players comparable to Baby (solid bench guys, capable occasional starters) make between $3M and $5M, including Luke Walton ($4.2M), Bruce Bowen ($4M), Ryan Gomes ($3.5M) and Kurt Thomas ($4.2M).
Baby’s thoughts on his impending free agency: “It’s hard not to think about it. But I’m just trying to go out there and play.”
The rest of the article is interesting because Baby admits to perhaps playing a little harder when KG isn’t in the line-up: “Mentally, I think I’m more focused when [Garnett’s] not [playing] because I need to play,” Davis said. “When [Garnett’s] on the floor, [coach Doc Rivers] is not going to say that I need to play and do well. It’s not as intense as when [Garnett’s] not here. But one thing that I need to work on in my game is bringing that intensity level every game.”
Davis is an open book with reporters, and it’s nice to have a thoughtful player like that on the team. Especially a young guy.
Other C’s news from around the Web:
• The team is looking forward to a home-heavy end-of-season schedule after lots of traveling, according to the Herald. Here’s the captain: “I haven’t had a stretch like this since probably I’ve been in the league, where I’m home for two weeks,” Pierce said. “It’s going to be great. We just have to make sure we use it to our advantage and put in the work, too.”
• Also in the Herald: Stephon Marbury is saying thing that make me uncomfortable. Here’s his take on his nice game Friday: “I was in rhythm, but you saw I also played a longer stretch,” Marbury said. “It’s a big difference when you’re on the court longer, but I understand my role and I understand what’s needed of me. When I get the opportunity I’ve got to seize the moment.
“Mentally, adjusting to coming off the bench is difficult, but I’ve got to understand that when I come in the game it’s like starting out the game for me, which it is.”
There’s an undertone here I don’t like…
• Celtics Blog has a poll up asking you to grade the C’s season so far. B+ is winning easily.
• Red’s Army has a nice-round up of the different strategies teams are taking in terms of the “rest versus record” debate, with special attention to the Cleveland-LA battle for the overall best record.