Doc Rivers joined Dennis and Callahan on WEEI.com this morning and discussed a variety of topics, highlighted by more talk about the trade of Kendrick Perkins to Oklahoma City.
Steve Bulpett had a report in the Boston Herald last Saturday, noting that the “stars approved and aligned” behind the deal, a statement that was openly questioned and dismissed by Yahoo! Sports NBA reporter Marc Spears, after the players somber reaction to the deal. Turns out, according to Doc, that Bulpett was right.
“I think they do [understand the deal],” Rivers said. ”I think our guys knew that from the beginning. Listen, everyone was upset. But we talked to our players — at least three or four of them — before we made that deal. And they all thought it was a good move, but they all knew it would hurt if we did it. And it did.”
Now who do you think those three of four other players might be? Perhaps the other three or four members of the starting lineup? Some commenters scoffed about this development when we reported it intitally. Why does it matter? What’s the difference now that it’s over?
I’ll tell you why. That’s a veteran locker room in there, probably the most experienced onE in the league. Big trades like the one last week usually don’t go down, unless they are approved by the guys that mattered.
Surely, it hurt to lose Perk but the C’s understood they needed help and healthy bodies, especially on the offensive end. And going forward, as far as team chemistry goes it’s a lot different to have a team with new guys that your future Hall of Famers approve of, rather than a team that had the rug pulled out from under them unexpectedly with this move by Ainge.
The trade is still a risk, a very calculated one, but I feel a lot better knowing the starting five gave the go ahead to Ainge on it before it was made.