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Russian Team Interested in Nenad Krstic…How Much Should We Worry?


While we at CelticsHub were taking an extra long holiday weekend (our apologies) the vast majority of you probably heard rumblings around the net (Via Sports.ru: h/t: CelticsLife) about the reported interest of a Russian pro team in the C’s free agent center:

CSKA Moscow are reportedly interested in signing Boston Celtics’ Serbian centre Nenad Krstic (27 years old, 213 cm). According to Serbian website Sportske.net, the Russian club has offered the player a long-term contract.

Meanwhile, commenting on this information CSKA president Andrey Vatutin has refrained from giving a direct confirmation or denial.

As the off-season is coming with active negotiations and signings of new players, there will be a lot of rumors on alleged future contracts around each club. Some of this information will prove to be true, some will be a complete lie and just an element of the agents’ game aimed to increase the price of a particular player. CSKA not will neither deny, nor confirm any rumors before the actual conclusion of official contracts,» Vatutin stated according to Championat.ru.

Although Krstic’s brief Celtic stint was underwhelming, primarily due to a host of nagging knee injuries, it can not be understated just how crucial the former Thunder big man could be to the C’s future plans. Why? Just take a look around the roster, where big bodies and more specifically centers are nowhere to be found. Jermaine O’Neal, the one signed center on the roster, is far from certain to return, as I documented a few weeks ago, due to retirement. That possibility places even more importance on Nenad when it comes to next season. And while it will take a while to know what the C’s are working with as far as the CBA is concerned, Krstic is one of the few crucial players that Boston has bird rights on this offseason, giving them the option to spend money on Krstic, while staying away from their pool of MLE money.

Due to this, barring a sign-and-trade, I felt like Krstic was as close to a sure thing to returning next season, giving his age, size, offensive potential, and reasonable salary (5.5 million). While no mentions of dollar amounts have been made yet over the rumored Russian offer, it’s safe to say any potential lockout could entice the European center to jump back across the pond for a more reliable and timely payday. It’s a very real scenario Boston could face, and just another reason to root against any lengthy lockout come July 1st.

  • kricky

    May be better to let him go and maintain some financial freedom than to sign him to something long term and settle in to mediocrity at the position.

    Plus, even though he had some nice games, I don't think he fits all that well because of his defensive liabilities.

  • James Patrick

    Who? Ohhhh yeah! The other guy in that bunk trade that sent us to an early playoff exit!


  • Greg

    If Krstic is "crucial" to your plans, you are in big trouble.

  • joebrown42

    let him go. With Shaq gone, they can now shoot for Dwight

  • Morpheus

    Eh, wouldn't kill us if he decided to pack his suitcase.

  • Renato Afonso

    While Krstic is not a star in the NBA, he is an average center who can actually score on his own if you just dump him the ball on the low post. Should the Celtics be able to keep his salary within reasonable numbers, then they should keep him.

    Allowing Krstic to walk just because the fans believe the Celtics have a shot at Dwight and need the cap room would be borderline insane. However, this may be a move by his agent to inflate his salary a little bit. Isn't it weird that the news came out in Serbia and not in Russia (possible destination) or the US?

  • I_Love_Green

    If Krstic leaves, and JO retires, we're left with 0 centers on our roster. We'd have to draft a couple of centers, and sign 1-2 centers just to survive next year at that position. After we do that, we'd have to hope that 2 of them play solid for us.

  • dal

    Can we re-sign and feed Chris Johnson?

  • Jim

    Ok , I think some of you people writing here are a little out of touch. Perkins was not going to come back and we were not going to the finals with the roster we had before the trade. Injuries changed everything. Our problem has been scoring not defense. Perk was and is a liability on offense. With Rajon hurt and Perkins healing does anyone think we had a chance of going sll the way? Lets face it the Celtics and Lakers are not playing today because both teams have older players who can not compete with some of these younger teans. I think we all should let Ainge work his magic. He knows more then us!

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