Post-game Reactions

Danny Ainge just wrapped up an interview over at WEEI.com, you can Visit WEEI to listen to the full piece but Julian Benbow of The Boston Globe transcribed a few key piece of Danny’s interesting comments:

On the future of the team:
“We need to make changes for sure I don’t think it is but having said that that’s my job is to evaluate the reasons why we didn’t play the way we’re capable of playing … We do have a team that next year come playoff time will be a year older and a team like Miami will be in their prime years.

On the starting lineup changing:
“Maybe there’s a change of roles. Maybe Paul comes off the bench, cuts down on his minutes. Maybe we find a way to get Jeff more minutes. His role will expand if he’s back here next year. There’s no question about that … ”

“It wouldn’t totally shock me if there’s a change in the starting lineup, but that’s just way too tough to tell.”

On the possibility of trading one of the Big Three:
“I would have to look into that if a good trade came about”

On the possibility of trading Rondo:
Probably not. I can’t ever say never, but that’s not our plan right now, probably not.

Ainge’s biggest regret:
“I would have fought harder to bring Tony Allen back,” Ainge said. “We tried to sign Tony, we tried to come within our rules of staying in our two-year program. I think that Tony would have helped us.

“We offered Tony a two-year deal out of the gate, but then when Memphis showed him some love and he started thinking about the idea of more playing time … Then, he wanted a change of scenery.”

On Rivers’s long-term future with the team:
“I think that’s the wrong assumption about Doc,” Ainge said. “That’s what most people think, he would just be here with this group of guys. I think Doc is a coach at heart. I think Doc likes the idea of staying in Boston.

“If there comes a time where our goal change in a year or two, where the goal is to make the playoffs, I think Doc would welcome that challenge too. He knows that every year of your career, you can’t be fighting for an NBA championship.

“I think he likes the idea of being a Jerry Sloan type coach and being with a franchise for a long time.”

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Brian Robb

Brian Robb co-founded CelticsHub in 2009 and is the currently editor-in-chief. He is a producer and reporter at 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston and also contributes to Boston.com and Bleacher Report among other outlets.
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  • kricky

    Jesus. The Cap coming off the bench to make room for Green? This is crazy talk. Ainge needs to have his head examined.

    • lakershater13

      Not crazy at all. Why not bring a 34 year old vet off the bench? Green could really grow as a Celtic and NBA player in the starting lineup with Rondo. I would even consider bringing KG off the bench with Pierce if the Cs could sign and trade Big Baby in for Carl Landry in another sign and trade. All of a sudden you would have a great bench and an athletic up tempo starting line up.

    • Steve B

      I've been saying Ray would be a great 6th man, only problem is I think Green needs to start if he stays. I don't know what Paul's reaction to that news would be though. The team needs some young legs out there with Rondo. If Bradley develops this summer this could be a fast team. Small still but fast. A young athletic guy at the 4 would be nice. Obviously Baby doesn't fill that role. The days of walking the ball up the court with a plodding center bringing up the rear are gone. Nice part with Krstic is he can trail and hit that 18 foot jumper and still give you length. Deandre Jordan would have been a nicer draft pick but here we are. Hopefully we can find that guy this offseason or come draft time.

      • talesofJP

        let Ray or PP start to show respect, pull a Shaq, let the backup have more minutes

    • kricky

      Aklan Iverson voice: "we talkin' about Green, man, Greeeen…GREEEEEEEN……."

    • ElRoz

      Extending the minutes of Green, Bradley, and Delonte is the right thinking…Ainge is rght. He just put it in a funny way of Paul coming off the bench. The point being that Green can playe 35 minutes a game and Boston needs to give him at least 24-25 a game – after the pre-season – to see the benefits of this guy. Bradley and Delonte can eat up minutes from Rondo and Ray and keep thes down to 30-32 min a game.
      If Krisitc and Murphy have a full pre-season and time to plug into the team and the system, and BBD is kept, this is going to be a good bench.
      They need a young center to back-up JO and as insurance for JO/Krisitc…a Kwame Brown or something: to push, bang, rebound.

    • Chris

      Insane crazy talk. Did anyone else see Pierce's reaction to Green fumbling a routine pass out of bounds when we were down 3 in the closing minute of Game 5? It was like "why the eff is this guy playing crunch time minutes????" Followed immediately by a shot of Danny in the crowd.

      No, if Jeff Green were to replace PP in the starting lineup, he'd have to earn it. He's done nothing to earn that privilege or the trust of his teammates.

    • Chris O

      I listened to the interview, it was a hypothetical not that it will or will not happen

    • Dennis

      Celtics Starting Five 2011-12 PG Rondo SG Pierce C J. O'Neal PF Davis SF Green
      Celtics Bench PG West SG Bradley C Krstic PF Garnett SF Allen
      I think this is workable. In due time, Davis & Green will develop into reliable the reliable frontcourt that they promised.

  • Batman

    Ainge I fully trust you to control our team

  • Guest

    This will get thumbs down but if he was gonna trade any one of the big 3, dare I say trade KG for Blake Griffin? The Management of the Clippers is that stupid to agree to a trade like that. Half court alley oop's would be a staple of Celtics basketball for years.

    • Guest

      Much better idea than having the cap come off the bench. That's crazy talk.

      • Keyser Soze

        Where do people come up with these trades? Do you have photographs of the Clippers management having sex with monkeys? Is that why you think they'll agree to this trade? Maybe you can convince Howard, Rose, and Durant to come to Boston too…

    • rondeezy

      please, blake griffin is the most overrated player in the league.

    • Dan

      Are you guys serious? You wouldn't trade a washed up KG for the best young big in the NBA? Of course this would never happen, not even the Clippers are that stupid.

    • If i had to watch that puky Blake Griffin on my favorite team …… i would have to give up the sport, I have to change the chanels when his commercial plays… He is a ball hog who the refs let get a way with traveling and shoving,call the fouls on him that he has coming and see what his stats are… there is no room for a selfish ball hog on the Celtics…. Before you get in a big hurry to trade KG look at play off stats

  • James Patrick

    LET'S TRADE AINGE! Bring in McHale!

    Tired of Ainge. I HOPE Green doesn't come back and Paul can't come off the bench. That's dumb.

    • Batman

      Too bad McHale is a terrible GM and KG hates him

      • someguyinsac

        How can KG hate McHale when he gave the Ticket a ticket out of Purgatory? And no McHale for Celtics GM for me either.

        • Batman

          Because KG trusted McHale to build a winner around him and McHale failed in the most epic ways possible
          Their relationship isn't terrible anymore, but lets remember that he got out of the "purgatory" that McHale himself created

          • someguyinsac

            True, that's why I wouldn't want McHale as GM either. To me, Danny has done a decent job and I'm curious to see what he cooks up for the next season.

      • Batman

        And Danny is a great GM and KG doesn't hate him

    • Stephen

      Agreed –Let's get rid of Ainge like yesterday!!!! Can you believe that fucking idiot still defending the Perkins trade. He fucks up the season and has to big an ego to admit it—-Now, I hate him more than ever.

  • Green Machine

    I’m not too good with the salary cap and those things, but I ask any of you guys that know. Will it be impossible to get: Pacers Roy Hibbert, Cav’s J.J. Hickson, Nuggets J.R. Smith??? Adding those guys to a team with: P.P.,Rondo,K.G.,Ray,Green,West,J.O,Krstic would make this team ALMOST INVINCIBLE. Waiting on your opinions!!!

    • Celtics Freak

      not all of them but signing JR Smith would be great

  • lakershater13

    I dont see why Pierce off the bench is crazy. The guy isnt 25 anymore. He will be heading into him mid 30s soon and his play is only going to decline. Our biggest issue has been our bench. Look at Jason Terry for Dallas and Manu Ginobili for the Spurs. Both are way better than the person starting in front of them. Both play more minutes than the guy starting in front of them but it give the bench a solid weapon. Pierce is signed for a few more years. If we want to get the most out of him when he is in the final year of his contract then we need to try to keep his legs fresh by keeping his minutes down.

    • Batman

      Manu started this year
      I kinda agree
      it really depends on the player that we put in front of Pierce
      Its the reason why the thunder start Thabo instead of Harden, because while Harden is much better Thabo gives u toughness and defense
      Harden gives the second unit offense
      I want Pierce to do that for us, i just don't think starting Jeff Green is the answer

      • lakershater13

        I dont see the issue with Green. Was he good as a Celtics…No. Did he show us he had potential…Absolutely. If you look at Pierce's career shooting percentages and Green's they are not far off. Pierce… FG 0.448 3pt 0.369 FT 0.805 Green… FG 0.445 3pt 0.337 FT 0.773.

        Now dont be down on Green about the lower 3pt % or the FT %. Pierce had down years in both those categories. Pierce was always told he was not a good defender. He has proved us wrong for a couple years now. Green is 24 years old and has a lot of growing to do as an offensive player and as a defender. I say let the kid grow and see what happens.

  • Jeremy

    I disagree with Paul coming off the bench simply because there is no need for it. Just cut Paul's minutes down naturally and have Green play more minutes in the game. Reduce Paul's minutes to lets say 28-30 a game, same with Ray's minutes and give Green all those minutes as he rotates between being Paul's back up or Ray's back up.

  • Batman

    The thing about guys like Roy Hibbert and J.R Smith
    I'm just scared of "potential" guys
    Jeff green is one of them to a lesser extent but guys like J.R Smith, Beasley, all the guys we say "sigh, if only he did blababababa he would be a superstar"
    I feel like we r going for a couple this offseason, and i do not want to overpay them and tie them to us long term for their first contract

  • michaelddwyer

    Green is a role player. Paul Pierce is a star player. The idea that Green should start over him is absurd.

    By the time you're 25, you are who you are. Other guys drafted from Green's class: Big Baby, Mike Conley, Yi Jianlan, Joakihm Noah, Corey Brewer, Rudy Fernandez — notice that nobody talks about "potential" with those guys. Green already is who he is, and anybody expecting him to be dramatically better (including Danny) will likely be disappointed.

    • Batman

      Well not a star anymore

    • lakershater13

      They have been talking about Conley recently saying they are so glad they waited on him because he is finally starting to come into his own as a player. I dont know if green will ever be an allstar but I think he can be a very good starter.
      I disagree that at 25 you are who you are. Look at Billups. How much did he bounce around before finally finding a home in Detroit and becoming one of the best PGs in the league for several seasons.

      • kricky

        Mike is right. good post!

        Green is who he is. The other guys you are talking about: Billups, Conley are PG. They had to learn the mental part of the game – when to pass, when to shoot, how to run the offense. That can take some time.

    • I_Love_Green

      The thing about Greenie though, is that he's been playing out of position his whole career. I think coming off the bench for Pierce, and playing the 3, would do wonders for him.

      • kricky

        Didn't we just try that?

        • Batman

          we tried it for half a season when he was thrown in
          if he sucks next year if we retain him then yes it didn't work
          can't take anything from this year though

    • TedL

      Green is who he is. But Pierce isn't who he was.

      We always knew the big 3 had a window, and unless Ainge pulls a rabbit out of his hat, it just slammed shut. Get ready for a return to 2003-2007.

  • Big George

    Truth has the potential to be the best sixth man in Celts history but honestly during the regular season he had great legs and was often the only spark. He has a lot of uses for us til the day he retires but sixth man next year is too soon. Green hasn't done anything other than sprint up the court a few times ahead of everyone else.

  • I_Love_Green

    I disagree 100% about bringing P off the bench. Thats just stupid. But I've always said that Ray would make a really great 6th man. The problem is, we need somebody who's actually better than him to start. And no, Jeff Green doesn't count.

    • Batman

      Maybe Delonte?

      • I_Love_Green

        I've thought about that, but it would probably hurt more than it helps.

        • Chris

          Any love for OJ Mayo? Kind of a low risk/high reward guy. Could swing b/t the 1 and 2, good handle and standstill shooter, tough defender and just entering his prime.

          Considering what the Grizz were willing to take for him at the deadline (McRoberts and a pick) and the fact that he's not really in Memphis' plans going forward, who would say no to a BBD sign and trade, Celts or Grizz?

  • Dan

    I think the shake up we need most is for Ainge to be sent packing. The trade for Green probably ruined our season and now he wants to double down on the guy and make him a starter? Over the Captain? This is more about Ainge trying to cover his ass than it is about preparing us for the future.

    • Stephen

      Exactly—Your statement is right on the money!!!!!

  • Keyser Soze

    Ray off the bench might make sense. Gives the 2nd unit some maturity and provides instant offense. And it pressures the other team's second unit's defense. The problem though is that there isn't a SG on this team who can start. Besides Ray's offense works best when combined with Rondo passing the ball and KG setting picks.

  • talesofJP

    I love the idea of Doc being a Jerry Sloan type. Doc is an incredible coach and could be mentioned in the conversation with other great coachs in the game who have stayed with one team, like maybe even Red?

    • someguyinsac

      If he didn't coach another team ever, sure.

  • Morpheus

    Pierce coming off the bench is STUPID. Danny done lost his damn mind if he thinks that'll work.

    Think about that one people. Paul Pierce coming off the bench? In what world does Danny think Pierce would be happy coming off the bench?

    Pierce wasn't drafted int he 2nd round like Ginobili, he hasn't been a 6th man year in year out like Terry. He's not a circus player like Crawford. So where does Danny get this idea that Pierce will come off the bench?

    Ray Allen coming off the bench makes sense. Could have Delonte starting…..OR… DA could go after Michael Redd in the off season.

    I wouldn't be surprised if DA pulled off a BLOCKBUSTER deal either, to land Dwight.

    • Morpheus

      Why do i think Ray would be alright coming off the bench? Good question.

      Ray at this stage of his career, is pretty much one dimensional, that is, he runs like a madman off screens and gets himself in spots for open jumpers. That's pretty much the only thing Ray does well at this stage of his phenomenal career. Plus i think Ray would be the only one out of the big 3 willing to come off the bench.

      How WOULD our offense look like though with Ray coming off the bench? More looks/touches for KG. If Delonte comes back( i hope he does) and starts at SG, i think our offense would really improve, as Delonte is better attacking and getting to the rim than Ray is. He handles the ball better than Ray too. It would allow Ray to come in and not exert too much energy on defending younger, quicker guards like DWade, Monta, Joe Johnson, but instead give us INSTANT OFFENSE.

      • Morpheus

        And Delonte creates off the dribble really well. IF Delonte can stay healthy and out of damn trouble in the off season, i like him starting and have Ray coming off the bench with Green.

  • kricky

    Green SUCKS people! What has he shown us? NADA.

    What a fucking opportunity he had, to come off the bench and contribute for a real championship contender. Do you know how many players would kill for that opportunity. He seemed to slink away with his tail between his legs.

    He is your prototypical tweener. Looks good when taking advantage of mismatches, but gives up a lot more on the other end. Sure he can score 20, but he'll give up 30 to the guy he's guarding. And he will come up short in the clutch time after time. How many awful turnovers did he have in this year's playoffs?

    Sign him to a nice contract, but then use him as trade bait to some other dumb ass that will fall in love with his "potential". I just hope trader Danny is being wily here, talking up Green to increase his price when trade time comes around.

  • Batman

    Maybe we should delonte at the 2? Interesting thought no?

  • Is Shaq done or what? That would be a bad way to go out. The Celtics really blew some golden opportunities.

  • Jay G

    If anyone thinks PP coming off the bench is a good idea, then u don’t Understand basketball or respect PP as the Celtics franchise player. Honestly I have nothing against Green, but him starting over PP makes no sense. I would rather PP retire than come off the bench.

    That’s like the Mavs benching Dirk, Lakers benching Kobe, Suns benching Nash or Spurs benching Duncan. I wouldn’t bench a still capable aging star player.

  • seven

    Think about it. Ainge isn't going to come out and say that Green didn't work out. Of course he is going to make it sound like Green has a lot of potential. I wouldn't jump to too many conclusions based off of comments Ainge makes the day after elimination. He knows he is going to hear about the mistake of the Perk trade so I look at these comments as nothing more than trying to sugar coat that decision.

    As for having Paul off the bench or trading one of the big 3, I don't understand that. Unless it involves huge gets like CP3 (not likely, given his comments on Rondo) or Dwight I don't see it going over that well.

  • Bill

    Just get a center. PLEASE. A REAL center. One that isn't 400 years old, injured, can rebound, and can go up strong and dunk the ball, not just put up garbage layups that get rejected over and over again.

    • dave

      How are you going to get a quality center? You have no money. Your quality players are all too old to command anything substantial in return with the exception of Rondo, and it's not as if those players are going to be shopped to begin with.

      Your draft pick is a late first rounder in a draft that everyone agrees doesn't have a lot of depth to it.

      You think cobbling together some weak offering that includes BBD or Jeff Green is going to bring you a quality center? From who?

      Until KG is retired or re-signs for far less money (next year), you don't have any flexibility. Maybe in 2012 the the Celtics could take a run at Dwight Howard when he tests the free agent market. Thats about the best outlook, although someone mentioned Dalembert which wouldn't be a bad option temporarily.

  • Tos

    I’m not neccessarily for this idea of Ray off the bench but I could see it as a possibility. However, I don’t see Delonte as a starting 2. He’d get torched by real SGs in the league night in and night out. BUT what about moving PP to the 2 and starting Green at the 3.

    Some food for thought. I do think Ainge may have too big aan-crush on Green for some reason though. I didn’t see much out of him to make me want to bring him back, let alone throw him into the starting lineup. But I’m just another fan, not an exec.


    guys, lack of perk didn't cost us a miami series. we were awful offensively down the stretch and perk would not help us in scoring. we need an athletic center and shooting guard who creates off the dribble. kg's contract will be movable in february.

  • Mike

    Is this like in 2006 starting players to increase their stock to make that blockbuster trade later on?

  • Jon

    Wow alot of people ar e going on Jeff. I have to say you didn't see much from jeff because he was given limited minutes especially when you all believed in how GREAT BBD was (where was he at in the playoffs?). I think even when Jeff had it going and added an offensive punch he wasn't given a opportunity to keep attacking. He would be taken out of the game. I have to say that in both series he played good defense and I think in this series he played better defense against Lebron than Pierce did.

    • Morpheus

      Yep i would be happy if DA brought Green back. He played some outstanding D on Bron in that series. You could tell he was just starting to get comfortable out there, getting some rhythm going on offense…he wasn't exactly world beater material, but he brought signs of life, energy that impressed me enough to want him back.

  • Jon

    I got a example in Game 4 I think when Pierce went down. Jeff came in and basically kept the team in it with his scoring. He had 11 points in the 1st quarter. Then you know what happened he came out the game with 7 mins and change left in the first half and Boston scored just 6 points until Jeff entered the game with 2 mins n something left. I'm not saying Jeff is Kobe or anything I'm just saying it was NEVER taken advantage of when he had it going offensively. That's just my opinion…the vibe from this board is that Jeff is terrible. He barely had 20 mins a game

    I'm also not saying Pierce coming off the bench is the answer but I think more mins need to come Jeff's way because Ray Paul KG are old they can't play 40 mins a game no more.

    • Morpheus

      And he's starting to GET the whole Celtic WAY too.

  • torpid bunny

    I like Green and he could be really good. He could also struggle to find himself for 3-5 years.The stuff about you are who you are at 24 is bunk. Does that apply to Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol, Dirk Nowitzki, etc? That doesn't change the fact that Ainge gambled with the trade and he obviously lost.

    Anyway, the main need for the celtics is at 2. They really need depth there, particularly defensively. If they want to beat the Heat (or the Thunder) they need a defensive force who can come off the bench. They also need depth at 4. Is BBD the guy? I say no. I've seen enough. Unless he had a legitimate injury this season, he cannot be relied on in the future. Strangely, I'm sort of ok with sticking with the Oneals (assuming they stay) and Kristic. Jermaine gave a big effort in the playoffs. Obviously if they could get a younger 4-5 who is a legitimate inside force, that would be terrific.

  • mike

    don't have the time to read all the posts, but pierce coming off the bench makes perfect sense….he can hold the second unit together with his scoring…he's going against back ups, he can spell both green and allen….he makes the bench a strength, rather than the weekness it was this year….

  • Mark

    I would like to see the C's take a chance on Greg Oden.

    • Dirty Mike

      Greg Oden is in a worse state than Shaq right now.

  • skeeds

    see, all this is crazy nba talk. What does starting and coming off the bench mean, actually? Nothing at all. What does 6th man mean? Nothing, again. It's how teams usually work. But not all teams are the same. And these Celtics are quite an unusual recipe…

    What if Jeff Green and PP share their minutes, 50/50? What if every night PP comes in guns ablaze in the 8 minute mark, for 10 minutes and then Jeff jumps back in full speed? And then the same again? No one of the 2 will get tired, or risk injuries, or have to carry a huge load. And then, how about the same thing happening with JO and Krstic (who is sooo much better than what we did with him this year), Ray and Delonte, KG and Baby, while Rondo gets regular breathers by Avery? offcourse any upgrades are welcome…

    We have a very high IQ group of players and a PG that can handle everything. We can do complexity better than anyone. We shouldn't stick to the conventional methods of starters, 2nd unit, 6th man, 3 lineups, etc. We can't beat the Heat with that.

  • deuce45

    The difference between last years team and this is athleticism. We were missing guys that could penetrate the defense off the dribble, changing the spacing for players to get shots. Most of the team were carrying injuries. And they still could have beat the Heat. Some poor decision making in game 4 and 5, gave Miami the series. And can someone show Big baby the door. Please. He has changed his game and has become ineffective, he is not a jump shooter, he doesn't have the mental attitude. I like Green Machines picks for trades: JR can shoot, dunk and dribble. Hibbert can defend, rebound and block. Those 2 guys would add to the veteran core, giving the Celts another dimension. Time to trade Danny, best of luck.

    • dave

      How are you going to get a quality center? You have no money. Your quality players are all too old to command anything substantial in return with the exception of Rondo, and it's not as if those players are going to be shopped to begin with.

  • Celtics Freak

    has anyone thought about Tyson Chandler???

    • skeeds

      I wish man. He's an exceptional defender, and as athletic as they come… but if the Mavs make it to the Finals, and/or take the Championship, that nutcase Cuban won't let him out of the team. He's not an owner who hesitates to spend…

    • bojo

      c's can't have a center who can't create for himself. With allen/garnett loosing their ability to create shots for themselves they need someone apart from pierce who can get a shot off in iso.

      Look how well c's did with shaq when he was healthy, even though it was 39 year old shaq.

      Unless Rondo gets a consistent mid-range shot, Celtics must go after Howard type player.

      • bojo

        Also let's hope otis smith doesn't have another massive brain fart and trade Howard for Bynum.

  • BOS 17, LAL 11

    Finally Skeeds talks some sense. All of this "Ainge is crazy" talk is ridiculous. Making Paul the traditional 6th man- a role that has historically been one of honor in Boston (in large part because it has been properly utilized and so HOF players have helped us win championships that way) is a no-brainer. It's not a benching! Maybe not next year- it totally depends on our personnel- but most likely by his final season three years from now regardless. Anyway, if our lineup is largely the same and we do retain Green, then yes, Paul makes the most sense to come off the bench. Obviously he will close games and probably play more minutes than Green (or whoever starts), but even besides personnel, he is a better fit as a 6th man than Ray, and is in my view the perfect 6th man, because not only can he create his own shot (unlike Ray) and provide offensive firepower off the bench, but as we often hear, he can give the game whatever it needs.

  • BOS 17, LAL 11

    Anyway, having one of our big three come off the bench to bolster the second unit and save their legs is a good idea. If Paul didwasn't comfortable with it and Ray was, we could start Delonte (who, to whoever said he'd get "torched" by NBA 2 guards, was only a starter and arguably the second best player on the best regular season team of the past two years. And did you watch the playoffs?) Anyway, a second unit featuring Paul and Delonte would be dynamite. It's no disrespect. Manu has won multiple NBA titles, a world championship, and is an All-Star, yet he comes off the bench. Why? Because it gives his team the best chance to win. The way this season ended made us look worse than we were. As Danny, said, we should have been up 3-2 after Game 5. (Good luck with LeBron going 5-7 from downtown the rest of the way, Miami fans). A few tweaks and we'll be serious contenders again next season. GO C's!

  • None of the big 4 should be benched or traded, don't forget how far they got last year and this year….easily could of gone all the way if not for poor offciating and tons of injuries….. Every one of them put on a Super Star performance in both the heat and knick series…. they just need a good bench that doesn't lose ground, almost everytime the starters rested they come back to a hole to dig out of. Just need Jermain healthy or another decent center, some bench depth and all is well…. we don't need the likes of griffin, rose or any so called super star screwing up the great chemistry this team has