Kevin Garnett is a Celtic

Photo illustration © Ryan Stewart

At first, I was oddly lukewarm on this. Sure, there's the obvious immediate benefits. The Celtics now boast an All-Star caliber trio that could easily run roughshod over the perennially weak Eastern Conference. It's not a stretch to say that the Celtics are now not only a playoff team, but also a contender for the Eastern Conference Finals as long as Pierce, Allen, and Garnett all stay healthy.

But at the same time, those three will all be over 30 by season's end. They'll all start showing their age two or three years from now. Will the Celtics just turn into another version of the bloated Knicks at that time with no payroll flexibility to get younger? And what kind of depth does the current team have left? Does it matter that they'll be starting Rajon Rondo and Kendrick Perkins with a bench of basically Tony Allen, Big Baby Davis, and Brian Scalabrine? Will this be what holds them back come next spring? Or will veterans now be rushing to play for this team for less money? And have we forgotten that Doc Rivers is still the coach?

Also, it just hurts to give up Al Jefferson. I know there's a tendency to overrate youth and potential, but Jefferson is a future All-Star.

But in the time since learning about the deal, I've come to realize a few things. First off, Al Jefferson may be earmarked for future greatness, but Garnett is great now, and at a level Jefferson, great as he might get, would be hard-pressed to match. And also, as Jackie MacMullan points out, the other Eastern contenders haven't done much to improve their rosters. The rest of the Conference is that bad (remember the Finals?), so a three-man team like this one can make it through to the end. Once you're in the finals, who knows what can happen. This was a chance the team needed to take. Maybe there will be problems facing this team a few years down the line, but hopefully by then whoever's running the front office will have a plan for a swifter rebuilding process, one that doesn't involve attempting to cater to an establish franchise player like Pierce. So I guess what I'm saying is that I've come around.

Also, check out Bill Simmons's take on this.

| More

 Friends' Activity   Popular 
All Blogs
Follow the Phoenix
  • newsletter
  • twitter
  • facebook
  • youtube
  • rss
Latest Comments
Search Blogs
Phlog Archives