There was little doubt that Danny Ainge would try to make a move or two to move up from the # 58 spot in this year’s upcoming draft, but little thought was given to the Celtics making a play for one of the top picks. The Commerical Appeal in Memphis is reporting however that the Celtics are at least exploring this possibility by inquiring about the availability of the Grizzlies number 2 pick. Here’s the excerpt from the report:
Meanwhile, the Griz still are entertaining offers for the No. 2 pick as well as their 27th and 36th selections.
As the rumor mill churns, the Griz have been approached by several teams about acquiring the second overall pick. Boston, Houston and New York are said to be among the most recent suitors.
Boston and Houston would likely have to offer an established NBA player or two, given that neither team owns a first-round pick. New York owns the eighth pick and likely would want to move up for the opportunity to take Rubio.
Celtics Hub’s Take: This rumor much like the Allen and Rondo ones from a couple days ago will likely have legs simply do to the fact that they are intriguing propositions. The fact of that matter is though is there is in all likelihood no way the Celtics trade for this pick, primarily due to the fact they have no chips of interest for the Grizzlies to deal for outside of their starting lineup.
Looking at the potential scenarios, the Celtics theoretically could deal someone like Perk or Rondo for the number 2 and another player in order to match up salaries but this situation is highly unlikely since Perk or Rondo is far too high of a price to give up for an unproven rookie like Rubio.
The devil’s advocate may say Rondo may be gone after this year anyway since he’ll command big money on the open market but even with that possibility, I can’t see Ainge sacrificing the last year of the Big Three’s “window” by giving up a blossoming 23 year old point guard for an even younger player.
The other potential possibility could be the C’s taking back a bunch of bad contracts (paging Marko Jaric) from the Grizzlies along with the number 2, for any combination of the Celtics expiring contracts (Scal, Tony Allen, etc.) in order to make the numbers matchup. This possibility also makes no sense from a Memphis perspective since they would not be getting nearly enough value for their pick.
The fact of the matter is with this team, the future is now with the core as its currently constituted. So while dealing for the number 2 pick who would have a reasonable cap number for the next few years could be a boon for the team’s long term prospects, it would be a disservice to the championship hopes of veteran stars on the team right now since the pieces Boston would have to give up for it are far too valuable to this franchise for the 2nd pick in this year’s draft.
So give credit for Danny for kicking the tires on this one, perhaps trying to convince Chris Wallace he owes the Celtics one after giving away Pau Gasol to the Lakers last year. Like last week’s rumors though, I wouldn’t lose much sleep over it.