Post-game Reactions

Can TA and Scal Pick Up the Starters This Season?

Can TA and Scal Pick Up the Starters This Season?

Alright comment barrage-ers.  Do your worst.  I’ve listened to my high school basketball’s warm up CD exactly 67 times and with the help of Eminem’s “Till I Collapse,” MOP’s “Ante Up,” Jay-Z’s “Bring ’em Out” and Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger,” I feel like I’m ready for anything.

Everyone knows the Celtics would be a better team this coming season if they were able to free up some roster spots by working a sign-and-trade for Marquis Daniels– hell, I think we’ve written about it enough here on Celtics Hub.  However, as the offseason drags on, it becomes more evident that the continuous reports of “Celtics still looking for a third team” are putting a damper on our collective hopes and revealing that the Celtics will have both Tony Allen and Brian Scalabrine occupying roster spots this season.  This prospect is even more troubling when thinking about how much better the Magic and Cavaliers could be this upcoming season.

In the beginning of the free agency period, Celtics Hub as well as many other Celtics related news sites and blogs clamored for the C’s to sign guys like Anthony Parker, Matt Barnes, Jamario Moon, and Leon Powe only to see each one of them go to either the Magic or the Cavs.  If that wasn’t bad enough, the C’s also missed out on guys like Grant Hill and Anthony Carter.  With respect to the fans perspective of how the Eastern Power’s free agency coups have panned out, the C’s are not on top- or are they?

Even with the Celtics not making a big splash on draft day as expected, or signing any of the aforementioned big time role players, the Celtics are still a team to be reckoned with.  Despite the fact that making such claims that include phrases like “if healthy,” “had Marbury panned out,” or “had Moore not forgotten how to play defense” it’s fair to say that the Orlando series would have gone differently if the Celtics had even capable bodies to play, let alone a healthy KG and Powe.  Taking a great team like the Magic to seven games down two players and without capable replacements is enough to show how great a team the Celtics were last year.

The overall point to this post, besides the title, is that the Celtics next year will be a far better team than last years, while I think the jury is, in fact, still out on the Magic and the Cavaliers.  Even though both the Magic and the Cavs did extremely well this offseason, they are still unproven entities.  Anytime you break up your team’s core and lose the player that runs your offense, there will be an adjustment period- even if you replaced that player with a Vince Carter.  Not only have the Magic broken up their core, but they have also lost Rashard Lewis in a bizarre performance enhancing drugs positive test (personally, I think Lewis should be allowed- no required to take steroids.  He and his Hyperize battery mate Kevin Durant.  Have you seen how skinny those dudes are?).  The Cavaliers, while adding quality role players such as Moon and Parker, they’ve also added Shaquille O’Neal.  When Shaq went to Miami, they won a Championship, when Shaq went to Pheonix, they got bounced handily in the first round.  That’s a 50 percent success rate for the post 30-year-old Shaq and he’s only getting older.

Meanwhile, the Celtics still have their starting five intact and have added Rasheed Wallace, retained Glen Davis, and will soon have Marquis Daniels to back up Paul Pierce and Ray Allen.  What’s lost in all of the offseason aquistions by the East’s other teams, is the fact that the Celtics have Rajon Rondo, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Kendrick Perkins, and (for the sake of argument) a healthy Kevin Garnett.  The C’s have also retained their key bench players like Eddie House, Glen Davis, and Brian Scalabrine.  It will also be exciting to see how much guys like J.R. Giddens and Bill Walker have progressed and to see if the C’s can get anything out of Shelden Williams (I’d argue that they’ll be able to see vastly better dividends than the signings of Mikki Moore and Scot Pollard produced).

I know we are all diligent and caring fans and that is why we worry about things like third string point guards and roster spots 12-15, but that is just the point.  Tony Allen and Brian Scalabrine are guys that are going to round out the bottom third of the Celtic roster should they be on it next season.  The bottom third of a team’s roster is reserved for players that fall in to the category of “whatever we can get out of these guys in terms of production will be a positive.”

Another thing to note is that it’s not like these players bring nothing to the table.  Last season, Brian Scalabrine played admirably in the wake of KG’s injury and Tony Allen has shown productive flashes in the past.  As long as Scal can avoid getting hit in the head and the C’s don’t play every game in Chicago (or any other city TA brings security concerns) than I’m confident that they can both fill out next season’s box scores with ample “5 minutes” and “DNP’s.”

Lest we not forget, last season Brian Robb wrote an article accurately claiming that Scal would be an X-Factor in the playoffs.  He came out, hit some threes, played quality defense, and most importantly played fearlessly after coming back from injury.  I wrote about how well TA gets to the line which should still be true today barring any drastic changes in game.

In a perfect world, the C’s would be able to swing and sign-and-trade sending Scal, TA, and a young gun for Daniels and backup/ third string point guard- and it may still happen.  Two things*, however, will not happen.  1) the Celtics will not be able to trade Scal and TA for a rotation player such as Keyon Dooling or Raymond Felton straight up; and 2) having Scal and TA on the roster next season will not make or break the Celtics.

*The Celtics will also not resign Gereld Green- not even to sweep up the Garden after games.  Too risky.

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  • Conall Mac Michael

    I didn’t really grasp what the article was about, was Brendan trying to say the C’s had done enough this off season even compared with the stacked Cavs/Magic, or was he tryin to say the Celts should actively pursue dropping Scal and TA. If so, SHAME ON YOU BRENDAN JACKSON. “Everyone” knows Scal is the spiritual leader of the Celts. think about it a Red Headed guy ballin for the Celtics.Its destiny. There has to be a red headed guy playing for the Celtics at all time. The only way ill be happy with the C’s getting rid of Scal is if they bring me in to replace him. And brendan Knows what im talking about!!!!!!

  • urbeltic

    I think Mr. Jackson’s point is…everybody needs to take a chill pill. DAinge et al made some solid moves, now its up to the coach & players (along with some luck in terms of health). It reminds me of a couple years ago when everyone was yapping about the Patriots punter who sucked….cause the rest of the team was extremely stacked. We’re in good shape, let’s just roll with it and chill out. KG, PP, RA, Rondoozle, Sheed, KP, make a team that any city would beg for.

  • Lex

    I believe the phrase you were looking for was “lest we forget”

  • Lex

    Boys, nothing really matters except two game during the regular season (can you guess which ones?) and the playoffs. Everything else is dog’s breath.

  • ed judson

    What’s the hurry to deal Scal and Tony now for? Their optimal trade value is likely in February at the trade deadline. That’s when underperforming or injury hit teams with look to purge salaries. Can anyone say Shane Battier or – how’s this for a perfect fit – James Posey? I think James knows the system. Plus a 2 for 1 opens up a slot for a pure backup 1.

  • KY Celts fan

    ed, in that scenario I would personally take shane battier.

  • Craig

    A 5 year old monkey could have done better. here’s a great quote from the above article:

    “When Shaq went to Miami, they won a Championship, when Shaq went to Pheonix, they got bounced handily in the first round. That’s a 50 percent success rate for the post 30-year-old Shaq and he’s only getting older”

    What does that even mean??!! Deep. Real deep.

    I know you think when we leave neg coments, you feel that we are playing right into your hands. Heck ratings and numbers are a good thing but come on, give us some substance in these articles, Celtics Hub! Or get some new writers. Your articles are always laced with bad grammar, typos and references/links to past articles on Celtics Hub that sucked. Who is your editor? Spell check anyone?

  • Sweeney

    Mr. Judson has it correct…trade deadline and two expiring contracts in TA and Concusion Man will be valuable to a team. Especially those teams who are not in contention for a Value Meal from McDonalds.

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  • I once rooted for and thought that TA had it in him to be a major rotation play. That being said I no longer see that happening with the celts or frankly any where else. Scal I still like…plays d with effort, hustles and can knock down open shots. BUT he is grossly over paid. So when your cost out weighs your short and long term benifits ya gots too go.
    As I look at the facts: know one wants either player yet, and keeping these guys on to fill out the bottom of the roster isn’t so bad. Just think both were counted on more the last two years than they will be this year. Both are going to be getting far less minutes this year. So were are keeping guys who know our system and have playoff experience…and they are the last two guys on our roster. What’s that say about the rest of the team when our weakest links are TA and SCALS? It says we are good.
    As bad as TA is he could play some where…Scal could too.
    It could be worse! We could have marbury and Moore! And we all saw how that worked out. Point is we are better than last year allready. TA and SCAL will be gone befor the trade deadline anyway…some team who’s not making the playoffs will send us some talent for expiring contracts. So for all of us who are a little down we still have these sucka’s on our team, the worlds still green as ever and the clocks count’n down to championship 18

    • Brendan Jackson

      Well put Matthew. That’s the idea I was trying to convey with the post. Expiring contracts continue to be valuable throughout the season and fans should keep their heads up; even with the Jason Williams Orlando signing.

  • jeremy hitchcock

    i think if the celts can offload scal it would be a good thing. i really dont like the daniels trade and the talk of him playing back up pg boggles the mind. that would give the celts two guys who arnt traditional pgs in house and daniels which could go horribly wrong especaily in the playoffs when rondo is rested or in foul trouble. and is daniels really an upgrade on TA, TA started the year of really well shooting over 50% playing good d filling his role well. if hes heathy TA is better than daniels . the celts need to go after a high quality back combo gaurd off loading 1st round pick scal TA or house or shelden williams or big baby for a player like a
    kirk hinrich
    keyon dooling
    antonio daniels
    ray felton
    anthoiny johnson
    jarret jack
    ronald murray
    i think ronald murray is a free agent sogn him equally effective at both gaurd positions no problems scoring either which is what the celtics need off the bench

  • jeremy hitchcock

    Ronald Murray:good fit
    Stephon Marbury-finished
    Sean Singletary- good defensively maybe a bit young and raw
    Jason Hart-finished
    Luther Head-maybe a shooting gaurd
    Damon Jones-only 3 point shooting finished
    Bobby Jackson-shooter
    Jacque Vaughn -finished
    Brevin Knight-still good defensively can hit mid range j

    murra,singletary and knight are the best options on the FA market

    unsigned draft picks
    Patrick Beverley
    Lester Hudson
    Jack McClinton
    patty mills
    patty mills the most well rounded and genuine PG
    hudson can certainly score

    dan dickau and carlos arroyo, carlos would be a good option

  • Cheers, great writing.