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Why A Rondo-Gasol Trade Makes Sense

 


Rumors of alleged Boston interest in moving Rajon Rondo (plus parts) for Pau Gasol were again floating around over all-star weekend. Danny Ainge effectively denied any discussions of that nature a couple of weeks ago but it’s increasingly clear the Celtics regard Rondo as an asset they can move, rather than someone they’re likely to build around. And if they are to move him, Gasol would constitute a superb return, perhaps the best possible one, given the lack of elite talents likely to be available to the Celtics.

It’s entirely possible the deal is nothing more than whispers and gossip, so this will wander into the theoretical, but if presented with it, I’d argue Boston should pull the trigger and ship Rondo west.

Post-haste.

I know that will draw some ire but see if the cumulative weight of the below sways you.

1) The Celtics are not landing Dwight Howard, and Peter May’s proposed Rondo-for-Deron Williams deal, while appealing, would represent the kind of early white flag the New Jersey Nets aren’t likely to throw. Williams has roots in Dallas, interest in Brooklyn and so far, there are no indications Boston is even a blip on his radar screen. So, the two top free agent prizes of summer 2012 are out of Ainge’s reach. And his preference — which he’s stated again and again and proved with the Kendrick Perkins trade — is not to pay supporting players before he has his stars. Gasol is a star, and one who fits well with the short and long term plans (more on that below) assuming the Celtics are, as reported, uninterested in a major rebuild.

2) Kobe Bryant is a known admirer of Rondo’s game. Rondo would also represent a massive upgrade at the PG spot for the Lakers both as a defender and a shot creator. It’s bizarre that L.A. would shed so much length in one season, but having given Lamar Odom away, perhaps they’re still focused on sliding Howard into the spot opened by his departure. Or perhaps Gasol, whose relationship with Bryant hasn’t always been smooth, has displayed insufficient ‘emotional toughness’ for Kobe, who is dead-set on picking up that sixth ring to tie Michael Jordan. Rondo and Kobe with Andrew Bynum is interesting. Rondo, Kobe and Howard even more so.

3) Doc Rivers made some interesting comments to the Herald this weekend. Behold:

“You sell (to free agents) what you have on your team, and that’s tough to say now because we don’t know what we’ll have on our team yet,” he said. “But I don’t think it’s a hard sell — the tradition and what we’ve accomplished. But you also have to have players to get other players. No matter where you’re at, it’s rare that a player is going to go somewhere where there’s no other players. So we want to make sure we have the assets and players that other players want to play with. And I think when that time comes, I think we’ll be ready for it.”

A resigned Big Three (plus Rondo) is no longer a draw because that core is no longer perceived as having championship potential by other players. Yes, Rivers is adored and, yes, the Celtics are seen as a terrific organization but there’s little lure in moving to New England to lose in the second round no matter who is behind the bench or how many banners are hanging overhead.

4) Gasol is still a fantastic basketball player. He makes Boston more dangerous in 2012 because he addresses two critical problems with this roster: rebounding and interior scoring. And this team is going nowhere in the playoffs unless they do something about those issues.

Gasol’s sporting a 21.11 PER this season off 17.0 PPG and 10.6RPG (21.4DRR), but you could argue that he’s actually being underutilized by the Lakers. If Boston ran a lot of initial post offense through him, as Rivers would prefer to do with the interior-averse Kevin Garnett, they’d open up all sorts of things on the offensive end. Gasol and KG are two of the best passing big men in the league, and natural compliments in Rivers’ offense, which is so reliant on ball movement. With KG at the high post, Gasol in the low, and Paul Pierce and Ray Allen as cutters, spot-up shooters and pick and roll partners, Boston’s halfcourt offense could actually prove an asset in the playoffs. Right now, it looms as a major liability.

5) Gasol is a good fit for the future. Remember how Ainge wisely lined up his contracts to expire in 2012? Well, Gasol’s contract expires the same year as Pierce’s does. Plus, Gasol is only 31 years old, the same age Garnett was in 2007, when he led the C’s to a championship. Gasol makes a ton of money ($19M per) but short an unpredictable injury he’s going to produce over the life of his contract and he remains very moveable around the league, as Daryl Morey’s December pursuit makes clear.

If the Celtics were to go into this coming offseason with Pierce, Gasol and parts (Avery Bradley, JaJuan Johnson), they’d be in a good position to add a B-level star and still return Allen and Garnett and compete for a title next year. Or if you’re inclined to linger in fantasyland, they could amnesty Pierce and try and pair Howard with Gasol. Or Williams with Gasol. The bottom line is Boston has more options with Gasol than you might immediately realize.

6) Rondo’s production might be replaceable.

Rondo brings a lot to the table. Sometimes. Rondo will almost singlehandedly win you playoff games. When he’s not neutralized by opposing defenders ignoring him. I’ll stop there. We all know the drill with RR by now. And we also know that Pierce can be an effective point forward and ball handler in the halfcourt, which has the added effect of keeping him engaged offensively. Imagine a KG-Gasol-Pierce-Allen grouping in crunchtime. You can’t double off any of those four. And any of them are good options to take a bailout shot with 2 seconds left on the shot clock. Add a PG with a reliable jumper and the Celtics are suddenly more capable of scoring in the playoffs than they would be with Rondo. They’re less dangerous in transition, but, of course, playoff basketball is a grind, not a sprint.

***

There’s an opportunity cost to moving Rondo for Gasol (or someone similar) and I’m sympathetic to the idea of building an uptempo team around him, but ultimately I think he’s on the way out at some point in the next year. Either between March 1-15, on draft night, in the summer or, at the latest by the start of next season. Assuming that’s accurate, this is the kind of move I could get behind.

  • matt

    pierce is a good point forward?!?!? he turns the ball over more than anyone on the team… and if they bring kg and ray back for one more season im gunna be sick… too old! too slow! too many jumpers! ray cant guard anyone anymore!

    • MAttsanidiot

      Suck my dick!!

    • isaiah

      go ray allen and rajon rondo

  • http://lucidsportsfan.com lucidsportsfan

    while i wholeheartedly disagree, and i think the main knock on rondo, can't shoot, isn't even true ( http://www.lucidsportsfan.com/2012_02_12_archive…. ), you do make some good points. and to matt above, rondo 3.7 TO per game, Pierce 2.9

    • felix

      totally agree. Rondo has been knocking down that midrange jumper consistently lately.

  • felix

    Even if the C’s won a title with Gasol, i would still consider it to be a bad trade. The Celtics haven’t had a superb guard like Rondo in decades! This is so not good.

    • LACelticFan

      I agree, DJ was the last great PG we had after him came
      1990 Dee Brown
      1991 Sherman Douglas
      1992 Brian Shaw
      1993 John Bagley
      1994 David Wesley
      1995 Dana Barros
      1996 David Wesley started(I think)
      1996 Chauncey Billups
      1997 Tyus Edney
      1998 Kenny Anderson
      1999 Wayne Turner
      2000 Randy Brown/Milt Palacio
      2001 Tony Delk/Joe Forte
      2002 Shammond Williams
      2003 Marcus Banks/Jiri Welsch
      2004 Chucky Atkins/Gary Payton/Delonte West
      2005 ????
      2006 Rajon Rondo/Sebastian Telfair
      2007 Gabe Pruitt
      2008 Sam Cassell/Stephon Marbury
      2009 Nate Robinson
      2010 Carlos Arroyo/Avery Bradley
      2011 Keyon Dooling
      Now as you know the last 8 guys were brought in to back up Rondo. Still want to give him up looking at our track record with PGs???

  • Sean

    I'm not wild about this idea to be honest. I don't like this sudden hating on Rondo from all corners (the guy damn near broke his arm for this team) and i think he is being undervalued by Ainge. That said if we were going to move him for a big guy i'd rather see Al Jefferson come back than Pau. He is younger, cheaper and the trade wouldn't melt the internet like a big Boston/LA trade would.

    Rondo and JO for Al and Raja Bell would work if Utah didn't force us to swallow Harris contract. Utah would still have Milsap, Favours and Kanter as their 3 bigs too. WIn win?

    • dslack

      I don't want to see Rondo shipped out either, but Pau Gasol is much MUCH better than Jefferson. If one gives up on Rondo, it should either be to improve the team or to help rebuild; the Jefferson trade does neither.

      • Sean

        I don't think the Gasol deal does either considering we'd have to give up a lot more to get him. My point is that it's no easier to build around Pau than Rondo but Ainge seems intent on shipping Rondo anyway. So if thats the case then i'd rather have Jefferson and a mide range FA (Green, Gordon etc) than Pau and scraps.

  • dasein

    Meh. I don't really get all the hating on Rondo either, he's an All Star with a good contract. He has weaknesses, but who doesn't. It's not like his contract is crippling the Cs.
    I also don't see how swapping him for Gasol suddenly makes us a contender. The implication here seems to be that we could do this trade then pluck a "PG with a reliable jumper" out of the ether. If it was as easy as that, why don't the Lakers just go that route themselves.

    If Rondo must go, I think I'd prefer something like Calderon + the Valanciunas kidd and maybe Toronto's 2012 1st rounder. Serviceable replacement now plus young assets. No idea if Toronto would go for it (Casey is a defense first coach), but it's an example of the general idea.

    • Sean

      I'm not sure that would fly with Ainge, he seems to want a star in return. Someone to help with recruiting other high calibre players. I don't see that happening, at least not in any way which improves our team long term anyway.

      If we're not going to get Davis or Drummond in the draft (which we're not) or a franchise FA in the offseason (which we're not) then i don't understand the reluctance to build around Rondo. Is it really any easier to build around Pau than Rondo?

  • http://twitter.com/KIDPRINCE22 @KIDPRINCE22

    C`s trade Pietrus,Pavlovic, & J.O`Neal to Milwaukee for S.Jackson he can average 15 points & 7 boards off the bench playing the 2/3/4 spot. C`s should trade Bradley,Moore, & 2nd round pick to Sacramento for J.Fredette. C`s trade Dooling & Daniels to Phoenix for S.Brown. C`s make a 3 team trade with the Wizards & Rockets for Center J.McGee. Wizards get Johnson,Thabeet, & 1st round pick and Rockets get Wilcox and Mack. C`s should sign E.House and J.Posey for 1 year with a new scoring bench they will come out the East.

    • noche

      Still on this noise huh? Getting chewed apart everywhere you post this ridiculousness doesn't stop you? Have to admire the persistence…

    • CelticsBIG3

      This is the worst trade yet

    • ripsonics

      how come his comments haven't been deleted?

    • Mark

      The same stupid trade ideas I see.

      Small hint: No one else wants House and Posey.

      • CelticsBIG3

        Most likely the reason why they aren't playing anywhere this season.

  • Los

    I don't like this idea. Rondo's jumper seems to be improving. Why develop him all this time only to ship him out when it starts to pay dividends? I'm not sure about the rest of you guys, but if people complain about Rondo being moody why trade him for a player who lacks "emotional toughness"? While inside scoring is a huge advantage in the east, I'm worried about the toll RR departure might have on boston's offense. RR has been called the engine that drives the C's. How can they run without him? The only way I make this trade is if I'm making a run at D-Will this summer. A team of PP, Allen, Garnett, Gasol, and Green might be attractive enough to lure him our way. Good luck DA. I really don't envy you right now.

  • SteveB

    I still believe if Rondo gets traded it will be more for reasons other than his play. When you watch the team during a time out look how many times Rondo is off to himself, appearing disengaged. I don't care how well you know what Doc is drawing up that sends a terrible message. "I know what I'm doing, you guys pay attention and don't screw this up". We obviously have no personal knowledge of what his teammates think but there often appears to be some type of rift there. Think of the trade this way for the next couple of seasons- Gasol and Bradley would seem an improvement over Rondo and O'Neal. If this wasn't the Lakers we might feel a little different as fans.

    • zach

      This is really the key issue – is he a negative influence on the team – we don't really know the answer to that but Doc and Danny do. Ability wise I think this is a really tough call. Gasol and Rondo are great players in thier own ways. Is there anyway ANY team beats the heat this year or next? If not isn't it better to hang onto Rondo? We would be the SLOWEST team in the league with Gasol and without Rondo

      • LACelticFan

        I would say that if he were a true cancer to the team they should and hopefully would shut him down, and put him on the inactive list, while trying to trade him. Hopefully it wont get to a decision like that. I do think that Doc being a former great PG and DA being a guard with rings, just are always on RR for everything he does and doesn't do. I believe they are his biggest critics, which cannot give him a sense of stability. The two guys who are to trust him, don't?

    • jaye wright

      the rift isn't with rondo and the team… the rift is with rondo and danny ainge…. a rift that exists with players other than just rondo…. the team is in the jacked up position it is now because of ainge…. players don't hesitate to go to boston because they don't have "players"…. they don't want to work for ainge….and ainge has "point guard envy"…. it's what some washed up pg's turned admin get when viewing younger point guards….

  • Tos

    I will say this again, I hate this trade idea. Wish it would just go away already.

  • CG12

    I'd do Rondo for Gasol in a heartbeat. I like Rajon – he is a good and valuable player – but that swap would make the team better now and in the future. Weak interior play is just killing the Cs right now. Gasol would be a vast improvement, whereas the drop-off from Rondo to, say, Avery Bradley wouldn't be that far on offense, and would be a substantial improvement on defense. The last couple of years have sapped the New Big 3 of what little remaining athleticism they had, so that there games are almost purely half-court, which is a bad match for Rondo's skill set. Rondo is best in a high-tempo, full-court game. The Cs current core can't play that way.

    More likely, however, is that this trade will never happen, the Cs will finish this year with basically what they have now, and will enter the off-season pretty much as they have planned for years – center around Rondo and Pierce and find some pieces to fill out the team around them. And I'm okay with that, too. But they decide to build around Rondo, they need to get him some guys who can run with him. Any more slow old guys and he is going to murder someone in the locker room. He looks genuinely homicidal much of the time these days, which isn't fun to watch.

  • IBleedGreen

    I don't care if Rondo gets traded or not, I just don't trust Avery Bradley as our starting PG…

    • zach

      Agreed, he has unique talents but can barely dribble with his head up

      • Jim

        I agree with you both. He is a back up at best. I do think he has improved but we are not going to be very good if he is our starter.

  • tbunny

    This is the only rondo trade I've heard of that could make the team better now and in the future. So it probably won't happen.

  • dslack

    I think that the best player on the Celtics next championship team is either Dwight Howard or, more likely, not yet in the NBA. Trading Rondo for Gasol probably makes the team better in the short term, but I don't think it makes them good enough to get by Chicago or Miami, let alone OKC or whoever comes out of the West. Perhaps not even the new-look Chandler-Amare-Melo-Lin Knicks, if they ever figure out how to mesh. Point is, I don't think it makes the Celtics contenders.

    If Rondo has to be traded, I'd prefer something like this trade (Rondo+O'Neal for Nash+Gortat). http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId
    Not sure if Phoenix would have any interest in that, but it also improves the Celtics this year, probably more so than the Gasol trade does. If the team wins a championship or has a deep playoff run, they could always return the free agents on 2-year contracts. If they flame out early in the playoffs, they can bottom-out quickly next year in hopes of landing the team's next superstar.

    Incidentally, I understand Wyc's not wanting to bottom out, because he likes playoff revenue. But teams don't win championships without a top-10 star in the NBA (usually more than one of them), and I don't see where the Celtics land a top-10 star if players won't come in free agency and if the team doesn't hit rock bottom and land a great draft pick. I understand that the draft is no guarantee of getting a good player, but unless Dwight comes via free agency or Avery Bradley turns into Derrick Rose (neither of which is likely to happen), landing a top player in the draft seems a necessary step to returning to being a championship team.

    • Ryan DeGama

      I think the Celtics are also motivated by the other three major sports teams in the city, all of which have title aspirations every year. If they go into the tank for several years, attendance could really suffer. There's only so much money to go around and the Sox, Pats and Bruins are going to keep making bids for it.

      • dslack

        That's a fine thing to worry about as a team owner. But I'm not a team owner, and I'd argue that swapping Rondo for Gasol is counter to the goal of winning a championship in the next decade.

  • W2.

    I have posted this previously, but I honestly believe that outside of the Lakers, Gasol will have more trade value than Rondo. Ultimately there seems to be an increasing number of good-very good point guards. In the east, there are few elite big men. Gasol brings short term stability to the pivot era, and he may be able to net better young talent and picks if things do not gel with the (slow 3).

    I do agree that we would be tough to watch at times as Rondo handles the ball effortlessly, and PP would no doubt dribble the ball off his knee at times and make us all cringe.

    Does anyone think Rondo is sick of being a Celtic (constant trade rumors and criticism?)?

    I am just interested in seeing the team play better.

  • kel

    Can't wait until we trade Rondo and he proceeds to drop triple doubles and win championships year after year. The kid is a difference maker, can't believe he's constantly in trade rumors. I also love how Rondo's lack of a jump shot has become THE excuse for this teams poor performance this year. I'd argue he's the only one really playing to his potential.

    • Awitz

      Best post right here kel… Rondo is capable of triple doubles all the time… give him some young finishers to run with and he would have the best numbers of any PG in the league. PP and Ray are miles behind him when he would be is making due with JJJ and Wilcox running with him. Rondo with Green and OJ Mayo next year would run most any team off the floor any night.

      • vivek_here

        exactly Awitz. rondo alone cannot win. C's have been not fully healthy. I say trade injuries, if you can.

      • High Rollers

        I'd love to see Rondo with Green and Mayo. I wish Iggy could pop over from Philly too. And Josh Smith. Although Doc would never be able to corral that type of crew. Be like playing pinball.

    • Cisco

      So very true!!! It really amazes me how we just cannot appreciate Rondo's true value and work on this team. So, let him go to some other team and play fantastic some place else, as we are not capable to love him. He shoots jumpers like hell lately, having very good stats, but still no good…?

  • LACelticFan

    With all of things coming this summer to be in our favor, I just dont see how giving away our allstar PG for another aging vet will helps us in the future. Yes RR is moody, but the media made him moreso that way after a moody Kentucky internship. Trade rumors everyday can and will affect a young player. Columnists everyday pointing out his flaws yet only giving minimal praise for what he does right, despite being selected for another allstar game. I say with 2 draft picks in the 1st rounf of a deep draft this summer, plus only 5 players under contract for next season, this is the time to wait. We havent even considered seriously if we should bring KG and Ray back. What value will they have? Can KG slide into a PJ Brown type of scenario? Can Ray be an even better Steve Kerr type? I dont want go to thinking about that while PP who has 2 years left is slowing down. Trade Rondo? For Gasol(19mil for next two years.)
    How about using that freed up money and target Nick Young, he will make us forget about M Brooks who some people wanted so badly. And target Brook Lopez. The guy can really play and you know it. If not him JaVale McGee. Knucklehead yes but only on a losing franchise. Wearing the green could change his entire perspective.
    A new line up with RR-Young-PP-JJJ-Lopez/McGee could keep us relevant. Then adding Green(if healthy) to take over for PP, and resign MP, RA, Bass, KG(as a back up C) to play with AB as the second unit. This 2nd unit could start especially in a shortened season like this one. That's eleven players in a rotation. Bring back Greg, Moore, and a combo guard for depth. 14 man squad, with youth, athleticism, and experienced vets. Two guys DA, Nick Young plus Brook Lopez/JaVale McGee. Stand pat dont trade RR, you can get him the pieces he needs to win in the summer because you will be so far under the cap, the money will talk.

  • Vivek_NJ

    lot of teams have used good drafted players. only big name draftee in celtics is rondo. al jefferson is gone. i think we should keep him and is a top 5 point guard. trying to get gasol is like applying bandage. rondo alone is not the problem. if you look ray allen played well when he came after a break and quickly slumped. kg came after his personal time off and played well against OKC. pierce is in shooting slump. Rondo scores triple double frequently. D-will is yet to score a triple double. if you see rose scores more but his assist is not great. rondo can do that be he has been told he is a distributor. now that there are more scoring pgs in the league, people are thinking rondo is not good.

    • dslack

      Everyone throws around the appellation top-5 point guard, but is it really true? Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook are all unquestionably better on a night-in-night-out basis than Rondo. Yes, he outplays them from time to time, but for a season's worth of production you'd clearly prefer any of those 4. Are there no other superior point guards in the NBA? There's Nash, who's having one of his best offensive seasons ever this year. There's Tony Parker, who's driving San Antonio to one of the top seeds out West without much help from Duncan or the injured Manu. Heck, Jeremy Lin has been arguably playing better than Rondo, though it's admittedly a small sample size.

      I love Rondo, and on any given day he can be the best player on the court, but for a whole season I think Rondo is no better than the 7th best point guard in the league, behind Paul, Williams, Rose, Westbrook, Nash, Parker, and guys nipping at his heels include Ty Lawson, Lou Williams, Kyle Lowry, and Kyrie Irving, any of whom could arguably be said to be better than Rondo (and if they're not, they're not far behind).

      • Cisco

        Well, Rondo's inconsistency comes from C's system and Doc always wanted the ball go to Paul Pierce in the 4th. How can he be consistent on daily basis, with Paul handling (and turning over) the ball? Doc Rivers simply doesn't let Rondo lead the team… Rajon plays with a leash, he is not free to play his game (and have the numbers other PG have).
        When he doesn't score, we blame him.
        When he scores much, we blame him because he scored to much and not moved the ball to Paul and Ray…
        Come on!!!

      • Anthony

        I truly believe Rondo is an unique talent and it's really hard to quantity who is or isnt better.

        That being said, there is a enormous amount of good guards. Besides the names mentioned by dslack, what about guys like rick rubio, brandon jennings, john wall, raymond felton, mike conley, tyreke evans.

        What if we were to trade Rondo for Gasol and flip Gasol for Scola, Dalembert, and Dragic? (I doubt Houston would give up Lowry) Its will fill ours rebounding, inside scoring, shot blocking needs as well as a capable pg in Dragic.

  • Nathan

    Do it!!!!!!!!
    It’s better short and long term than Nash gortat trade.
    Rondo-joneal and if needed clips first round for gasol and the celtics are a threat this year and next
    Yes pierce turns ball over but celts play well with him running thee show either way

    • dslack

      I don't get it. The Nash Gortat trade provides a point guard who's arguably Rond's equal AND adds a center. The Gasol trade provides a better center but leaves the team with no decent point guard.

      • dslack

        And by the way, Gortat has almost identical PER to Gasol this year, although I do think Gasol's would be higher if he featured more, i.e. if he weren't playing next to Kobe.

  • yourdumb

    Absolutely stupid if danny trades rondo to lakers. Lakers get the PG they need as well as shedding all the contracts they need to sign howard in the offseason. Danny would essebtially ensure that the lakers are aet for the next 6 or 7 years while msking boston a 4 or 5 seed with no chamce of getting past bulls, heat or pacers. Stupid move if he even considers it.

    • dslack

      No way could the Lakers sign Howard even if they do this swap. They'd still be above the salary cap.

  • ripsonics

    Yeah… I still think you go hard for d-will and if you strike out there then you have to come up with something new. I do not like this trade idea, but you know danny – he is bold.

    We'll see what happens!

  • tbunny

    Rondo might be really good with the Lakers. We've seen how good he can be with a dynamic big man. This trade might make both teams better.

    With Gasol at center Garnett is freed up to dominate the passing lanes. This team becomes a defensive beast.

  • If You Only Knew

    Nba Trades Are Pointless. Trust Me I Know Personally. The Celtics Shold Stick With Who They Have Now And Rebuild In The Offseason. It Creates Better Opportunity and lets the team build as a team. More Practice, More time to get to know the plays. When Are they gonna practice this season? Once a Month? Pointless To bring new people in right now. The Boston celtics are still a championship contending team. No Doubt. Wait Till The Offseason, Sign Javale Mcgee Keep Wilcox Or Jermaine Lose Stiemsma. Sign Ronny Turiaf Keep KG And Brandon Bass. Leave The Small Forwards The Way They Are. Two Options At The Two Guard Either Keep Ray and Mickael Pietrus Or Lose One And Sign Nick Young. Lose Sasha. Keep Rondo And Avery And Lose Keyon.

    • LACelticFan

      See I am with you up until the JO part, I think he knows he is done, so let him retire. But as I have said before to turn this into RR's team an upgrade is needed. And nick Young is one part along with JaVale. I agree. We can pay both more than they have been getting in Washing. In fact double could get them both here. Plus bringing back Green if healthy. Though I wouldnt lose Steimsma as he will come cheaper than Ronny, and could bring the same production with enough practice time. But I would let Keyon, Marquis, Sasha and JO go home. BUt truly explore whether to bring Wilcox back. JJJ needs those minutes.

  • skeeds

    I think at this point we're just plainly being delusional if we think trading Rondo for Gasol will make us contenders. If Ainge is gonna pull the trigger on a big trade, it should only be to make us a legitimate contender. Even more blatantly, a trade makes sense if it gives us a chance against Miami AND Chicago. And I like Gasol very very much, but he can't do that. Not if it means losing your best player in the deal.

    Can we imagine a scenario where we win a series against the Bulls with Bradley and Dooling covering Rose? Can we find a way to beat the Heat with no star PG, with their big 3 outplaying our veterans by far?
    Whether we like it or not, Rondo right now is our only player able (even if only rarely) to do any damage against those 2 opponents.
    IF we're gonna trade him, it has to be in a deal that leaves us all around stronger, without holes in our lineup. A trade that leaves you with Kenyon Dooling as a starting PG, does not make you a better contender.

    • dslack

      Bradley might actually be okay on defense 1-on-1 against Rose, but still I'm concerned about the matchup.

      • skeeds

        he can be, down the road, but not yet. He's too foul prone to guard him for 35 minutes. Right now, Bradley is good for disrupting rhythm, few minutes at a time, a perfect compliment to Rondo's loose opportunistic defense…

    • Anthony

      Not that I'm for or against the trade, with Gasol the Celts would have advantage against both the Bulls and Heat. No way Boozer or Bosh can guard Gasol. They can barely guard an aging jump shooting KG. At best, maybe Noah can neutralize Gasol but Boozer cant guard KG.

      AB/ Dooling/ Moore sharing guard duties would be a concern though.

  • Lantrell Walker

    This article should be titled: How Danny Ainge can gift wrap an NBA championship to the Los Angeles Lakers & lose his job at the same time

    • salvaje50

      answer: very easily

  • jaye wright

    evidently you DON'T know the drill with rondo… but what you do seem to know is how to regurgitate old cliche's…. teams ignore rondo so much that they are forced to try to defend him with superstar forwards in hopes to (your word) "neutralize" him…. the lakers ignored him so much that they were forced to try to defend him with kobe… miami even tried lebron….. try getting your facts from somewhere other than the nonsense that has already been regurgitated by other hacks…. how in the world did you get to be on anyone's staff??

  • I_Love_Green

    In every Rondo trade rumor, the first thing I think of is does this trade give us a good chance to get past Miami/Chicago? I don't think so, but it does make us better. With this trade our young star is being shipped out for an older star. Gasol would definitely make this team better, and I'd LOVE to watch him and KG play with eachother.

    However, we still have a problem with defending the wing. For some reason this goes generally unnoticed by fans, but Ray Allen is getting killed on defense almost every night. I do not trust Ray+Pierce to go against Wade+Lebron and have us come out the winners. The frontcourt is our most glaring issue, and would be solved here, but without getting help on the wing this team goes nowhere.

    • Anthony

      I think even most casual fan have definitely noticed Ray getting killed on defense. Ray/Truth guarding Wade/Lebron is a much scarier thought than it was before…. unfortunately.

  • DP757

    I HATE that all of you "Celtic fans" are constantly dogging Rondo. He can be anything you need him to be. You need him to put up 30 points in a game because Garnett is out and Pierce is in a slump… no problem. You need him to dish out 16 good looks because his team is on a roll and not shoot, got you covered. Probably the best defensive PG in the game and the kid can run. He's WAY undervalued and will prove the doubters wrong should he get traded or when the C's actually need him to be the man.

    People want to talk about how the big 3 make Rondo… it's Rondo that makes whomever he plays with better. He just needs to be able to stop worrying about what city he's going to be working in and start focusing on the game.

    • Anthony

      I cant speak for anyone else but I'm a Celtics fan first, Rondo fan second. The team will always come before the player. As much as I think Rondo is a great player, its hard to say if he's undervalued since he's played with essentially the same team/players his entire career. The only stat that matters is wins.

      Suppose the trade actually happens (which I dont think will btw), and Rondo averages a triple double but Lakers suck and somehow miss the playoffs, while Gasol has decent stats and Celts win #18…. would we really care?

  • Batman

    I don't understand the point of trading a young superstar that the fanbase loves for an aging player
    WE"RE NOT CONTENDERS WITH RONDO OR WITH GASOL
    Honestly why can't we enjoy Rondo?

  • salvaje50

    rinky dink….Rondo stinks

  • Jon

    The only way I see Rondo getting traded is if Gasol gets used in a 3-team trade with Orlando for Dwight Howard. Then sign Deron Williams this summer and turn rondo into a 6th man. For this trade to work it could probably be Rondo-Pierce for Gasol

    Ray Allen will either retire a Celtic or be traded to the Bulls for hopefully Taj Gibson but I think they play different positions.

    KG will retire a Celtic
    J.O retire a Celtic

  • green-boner

    theres more butt hurt rondo fans in here than you can count on his 13 inch fingers.something is messing him up mentally and no one here has proposed a solution to it.i believe the cp3 puruit took his heart out of this team.unless you claim to know how long it takes rondo to get over a broken ego let him go.

    • Anthony

      He's probably still upset about 1) the Perk trade 2) the old guys not being able to run with him, thus making him look better. 3) Doc wanting to replace him with his son Austin.

  • 1Celticfan

    To you people with ZERO loyalty and ZERO faith you dont deserve to be Celtic fans! These are the "old" guys who led the eastern conference damn near all year last year, they went on a 14 game winning streak not matched by any other team in the NBA that year, they never lost more than 2 games in row another feat not matched by any other int the leage for the year.. they beat all of the elite teams at least 50% of the time… they were on a hell of a run until stupid trades, horrible officiating and finally one too many injuries (Rondo's) finally stopped them…they accomplished all of this while plagued by injury and poor officiating..I for 1 do not beleive that human being age that fast….It was the lock out, with so many new guys that have caused the slow start…As long as Ainge doesn' t do anything stupid they will be fine…and will make a good play off run.

  • lakershater13

    Love Rondo and I think there are only 2 trades you can include him in.

    Bass and Rondo to Utah for Favors and Millsap.

    Rondo and JO to NJ for Dwill(only if he signs extension)

    Did anyone notice Rondo quietly dished out 8 assists in the allstar game. Rondo is one of the best at what he does. You trade him and you have to get equal talent back(dwill) or a young promising big(favors).
    The Dwill trade gives you another pg who can really light it up and help other free agents come to Boston. The Favors trade adds a young big with out messing with the cap room for this off season. Only adding 2 mil a year to the payroll while seriously upgrading the Cs front court.

  • Shane

    The only way I do this trade if I'm DA is if I can somehow procure draft picks or young assets in addition to Gasol. As good as Gasol is, Rondo is still only 26, which means that the 5 year difference between him and Gasol has to be compensated for somehow. Yes you could say that they are of equal value now, but the fact is that RR will be playing for years after Gasol has reitred. I do this trade only if there is a pick or prospect involved that, as of now, has gone unmentioned. Devin Ebanks is a capable defender with potential to grow under PP, and a first rounder from the Lakers combined with the Celtics' pick and the Clippers' might be enough to net them a higher pick than they could currently attain. Doesn't seem too much to ask does it?

  • Ben

    I'm torn about this because I love Rondo. At the same time, I think that doing a deal like this might give us more flexibility going forward. It' s no secret that the point guard position is flush right now, while big man talen remains difficult to find. Gasol is probably the most talented big man in the game. I like some of the suggestions Simmons gives towards the end of this article he wrote: http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7604660/the-d

    Imagine if we were able to trade Rondo for Gasol, then turn KG for Odom/Marion, then turn Allen for Mo Williams and Eric Bradley. A starting 5 of Williams/Pierce/Marion/Brandon Bass/Gasol with a bench of Odom/Wilcox/Pietrus/Bradley/Jujuan Johnson/ etc. Not bad a tall and gives us something to try to build upon in the future. Again I'm torn, but if we let KG walk and then don't get Howard or D. Williams then what are we left with?

  • shervin

    boring man!

  • Marcos

    I’d make this deal, this would not only help on the offense but will solve our rebounding woes, two areas that are killing the Celtics right now, then I’d sign Gilbert Arenas for the vet’s minimum just to have an experienced PG in the roster come playoff time, I know Arenas is not what he used to be but he’d be better than relying on the always injured Dooling, that would keep the Celtics competitive this yr & could push for Howard & D-Will in the off season, after all Howard said he wants to win and could convince Williams to join him in Boston since the Celtics won’t look like a rebuilding team. Imagine Williams,Pietrus, Pierce, Howard & Gasol next yr, with Bradley, Green, Wilcox & Bass coming off the bench. That’d be an automatic championship contender right there!!!

  • Hector

    I am kind of wondering,being nothing but a celtics fanatic since 75,Why would we give a flying crap as to how a stupid trade such as this would fare for the lakers.Why would we care how Bryant feels about Rondo or anything else not involving the Green.Screw The Lakers and keep Rondo in Boston.

  • Mike

    Rondo, JO, Dooling for Nash and Gortat

    Starting 5, one last run… Gortat can get rebounds which this team has no clue how to… Nash contract up….

    Nash
    Allen
    Pierce
    Gortat
    Garnett

  • yoki

    This is a bad trade. Gasol is making 18 million and is getting old. He cannot play Center ANYMORE as he is too soft on that spot to begin with. He does not fit in the rebuilding plan of the Celtics. And who is going to be our point guard after this deal, Bradley? Dooling? Someone from the FA?

    This trade makes sense alright, for the Lakers, not for Boston.

  • marilyn

    NO TRADE FOR RONDO MAKES ANY SENSE AT ALL…geeze louize what is WRONG with you…GET OFF THE KICK TO TRADE THE BIG FOUR….only the COMPETITION thinks its a good idea to trade ANY of them…for PETE"S SAKE..GET A CLUE ALREADY…have you not SEEN what they have been doing on the court???? I agree with Lantrell TOTALLY….Danny Ainge needs to find a new hobby….and the referees need to be REPLACED with sighted individuals with brains…

  • marilyn

    Personally I can NOT STAND that Gashole

  • marilyn

    RONDO is only moody because the idiot refs let him be trampled underfoot without calling a foul MOST of the time….they don't LIKE Rondo because he DARES to confront them when they blow it ….again and again and again and again….how do these idiots keep THEIR jobs..and why can NOBODY tell them off….what a crock !!!

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