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Celtics Interested In Battier (But Don’t Get Your Hopes Up)

 

We’re less than 72 hours from the trade deadline and with Carmelo Anthony finally on his way to New York City, the rest of the dominoes can start to fall around the league. ESPN’s Marc Stein reports that the Celtics and Rockets have discussed the prospect of a deal centered around Shane Battier.

Reporteth Señor Stein:

It’s too soon to say whether the teams can reach an agreement on a deal to send Battier to the Celtics, given that Boston’s trade chips are limited and since Houston is regarded as one of the most aggressive teams in a conservative market and might need Battier’s expiring $7.4 million salary for a bigger move.

Two points here:

1) Battier would be a near-perfect addition to the Celtics bench. At 6’8′, he’s got the size to guard the elite threes in the league (as well as some twos, as the photo to the right makes clear). The 32-year-old also possesses the kind of commitment to defense that would allow him to integrate quickly into the Celtics’ culture and the basketball IQ to pick up the C’s systems in time for the playoffs.

Battier’s hardly an offensive dynamo (12.89 PER) but he is shooting .385 from the three-point-line; the same as Paul Pierce. He could offer better floor spacing on the second unit than did Marquis Daniels and give Doc Rivers another shooter for key late-quarter sets.

2) It’s not going to happen without serious contortions from the Celtics’ front office. In fact, both SI’s Chris Mannix and CSNNE’s A. Sherrod Blakely suggest the deal is not happening. But there’s no guarantee Houston will find a better option for Battier’s contract in the next three days and these things have a way of returning from the dead.

Of course, there are more than a few complications here for Danny Ainge.

Battier has value as both a player and as an expiring contract, which means Houston isn’t going to dump him for nothing.

With Yao Ming’s future in doubt, and with no other elite players on his roster, Daryl Morey will be looking for one or more of the following in return for Battier: a star player, young talent and draft picks. They can’t get all that for Battier, but as Stein notes, the Rockets may use his contract as part of a larger deal. How excited should Houston really be for a grab-bag from a group of Celtics like Daniels, Nate Robinson, Avery Bradley, Semih Erden and Luke Harangody?

The Celtics do have appealing pieces but they aren’t going to part with Kendrick Perkins or Glen Davis, either of whom would probably be enough to get the deal done, but neither of whom is worth trading for Battier.

Anyone have a brilliant three-way-deal? Because that’s what it might take to get this done.

  • skeeds

    I think the key here is to succeed in making a trade without punching a hole through the roster. So with our current roster, any big is untradeable, (including Semih) and Nate is hard to give up, especially since West can't be relied upon 100% yet.
    Also, trading Nate for Battier solidifies Wafer as the SG in the 2nd unit, which I'm not very comfortable with, although the guy has shown some serious potential. Not to mention I like Nate. He's a cool guy.

    In any case, having Battier's defensive talents would be more than amazing.

    I just hope we don't trade a couple of young energetic players for a "veteran shooter", a la Finley. We have all the scoring we need. It's all about the defence.

    • zebulon

      Trading for battier takes wafer OUT of the lineup, as shane would play essentially all of the minutes as the backup 2 and 3.

  • http://twitter.com/BradChampagne @BradChampagne

    PLEASE GOD, let this happen! I'd trade Nate in a heartbeat. I actually like the kid but damn, we have enough firepower at the 2. A big, defensive minded 3 that can play the opposition's elite the way he bodies up on Kobe and gets his hand in his face…. more than worth it. No bigs but easily anyone else on that list.

    - BRADinLA

    • http://twitter.com/BradChampagne @BradChampagne

      If we got him I don't how we're no the favorites to take the title.

  • Jaffe

    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId

    What about bring posey back for JO or does that kill the frontcourt too much

    • http://twitter.com/BradChampagne @BradChampagne

      Posey's lost more than a step or two I believe.

  • rondeezy

    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId… too good to be true? i know the rockets want to part with brooks and battier. but jordan hill is a long shot and i think he can be valuable to the celtics

  • frank

    just trade JO for battier JO is pc of sht

  • TMC

    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId

    Houston gets back some value, gets to dump Brooks, Boston gets its stopper. Jersy gets a high volume scoring PG who can light up a place.

    Win Win Win, and we even get JO off the books

  • Ryan DeGama

    Nobody is going to take J.O. unless the Celtics take back a worse contract/perpetually injured player.

    Need to let that one go, folks.

    • jim

      yeah agreed no team going to take JO..he useless to the team..get shane DA make it happen

    • jacksobd

      One big thing to think about is whether or not JO makes it known that he's retiring after this season. If that's the case then his value increases because he becomes a de facto expiring contract.

  • Batman

    Dear god…..when i go to school next week all the "knicks" fans will be back……..ugh

  • Tos

    Possible 3rd team our old pal Thibs, they are said to be interested in Courtney Lee. Chicago provides Asik and/or Gibson and we send them Avery, 1st rounder and Nate. (or if they’re up for it JO but highly unlikely.)

  • talesofJP

    I'd rather be thin at point guard, with trading Nate, than be thin at the 3 with only having Pierce. Rondo can play more minutes and we have Delonte coming back soon enough. Ideally, we would be able to get Battier, drop Avery Bradley and get a veteran point guard like we did with Sam Cassell. Any ideas on that?

    • Robert

      This is a good point, especially considering that Rondo generally plays 40-44 minutes in the playoffs. Delonte could pick up whatever is left at the point when he's not backing up Ray.

  • aaron

    gee whiz, since denver wants to get rid of galinari now, lets just get rid of quis and cash for dg.

  • nick33

    I traded J O'Neal for J Posey in NBA2K11. Worked out well for me.
    In real life, I'd rather get S Battier.

  • dslack

    It's hard to work out a deal that doesn't include both Nate and Avery, but I don't see how Boston can give up both of them — with Marquis out for the rest of the season most likely (I hope he is, for his sake!) — because then they have no more backup PG. Ray? Paul? Von? Someone from the D-League?

    Seems really tough to work out a Battier trade. Bill Simmons's suggestion of Jermaine for Shane doesn't work because Shane's contract is expiring and Jermaine's is not.

    Another option is just to sign Stackhouse. Might be the best they can do.

    • Robert

      Delonte will be the backup point, even if Nate stays on the roster.

      • dslack

        Good point, I forgot about him. Still, he seems to be pretty fragile….

  • Keith

    Brilliant 3-way, since Houston is supposedly interested in Nene. Not sure it gets the Nuggets enough, though. Might need to have Houston send some picks too.

    Celts get: Battier
    Nuggets get Bradley, Martin, Nate, picks?
    Rockets get Nene, Daniels, Afflalo
    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId

    • Ryan DeGama

      One x factor on a trade like this is it's unclear what kind of approach Denver will use to rebuild. Could be a number of things….

      Silly Zeke-style short term "fixes", the kind that ruined the Knicks? A more measured approach laden with value acquisitions in an attempt to parlay them into a superstar (Ainge/Morey)? Sit around waiting for superstars to just show up, a la Pat Riley? Gather as many point guards as possible (Min)?

      • Tom W

        KAAAAAAAHHHHHNNNNN!!!!!

  • Jason w

    3 way trade

    Celtics get: Shane Battier
    Rockets get: Gerald Wallace, Semih Erden, J.O., Boris Diaw. $3mil from Cs and 1st and or 2nd round pick
    Charlotte gets: Yao Ming, Chase Budinger and/or Courtney Lee

    These trades work in the trade machine and both trades are really being discussed. With the money and the strong probability of J.O. retiring after this season, it's really not a bad deal. We would just have to pick up a center after waives go through.

  • John V

    Rockets get: J O'Neal, S. Erden, M. Daniels, a first round pick, and $3 million. Celts get Battier, Terrence Williams, and, to make the numbers work, Ishmael Smith. Williams got dumped by the Nets for being toxic, and is just in the news complaining again. He's got another year on his contract and the Rockets seem to have no use for him. So, I'm hoping they see getting rid of him as addition by subtraction. They get two big men in O'Neal and Erden, and can probably buy out Daniels and save some more money. And, of course, the draft pick. Plus, they save about a half million in salary for the rest of the year, and get the three million from the Celtics.

    I think the Rockets would rather do this than do nothing. But they probably will hope to do better.

  • John V

    For a three-way deal… well… who wants Nate? If anyone does, start with them. But I don't know if any such team exists.

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