Hmmm. Seven players and picks for one guy? A Minnesota team involved? It's like the Herschel Walker-trade, only in reverse. Except, instead of Jimmy Johnson getting a ton of draft picks to mold the future of the franchise, it's Kevin McHale getting the "Al Jefferson pu pu platter"* instead.
*™ Bill Simmons
Like since when did Boston become the hot NBA destination that Los Angeles used to be??
So-- so we can all look like geniuses or morons in five years, let's predict how the Celtics will do in the five years KG has left on his contract. You can be as detailed as ya wanna be.
I figure the Celtics will get at least to the Eastern Conference semifinals and maybe the East Finals in 2008 (year one).
Another deep playoff run will end in disappointment in 2009.
I predict the Celtics will win Banner 17 in 2010, ending what will by then be a nearly quarter-century drought of world titles.
And they'll win Banner 18 in either 2011 or 2012.
EDIT: Also, Here's an amazing article written by former Timberwolves/current Celtics announcer Sean Grande, about Kevin Garnett.
(edited by ekedolphin on 4.8.07 0236) "Forget belief systems. Forget about the parameters of rational thought as it so smugly is called. Feel, my friend-- feel!" --KARR, Knight Rider episode "KITT vs. KARR"
Remembering Chris Benoit (1967-2007) and Eddie Guerrero (1967-2005)
Fan of the Indianapolis Colts (Super Bowl XLI Champions), Indiana Pacers and Washington Nationals
Certified RFMC Member-- Ask To See My Credentials!
I think a lot of people are getting ahead of themselves about the Celtics (and the Atlantic Division in general). Sure, this team looks good on paper, but a LOT of teams have looked good on paper and come out flat. When the trade went through, I thought that the Alantic would FINALLY be good, with NJ being healthy, NY adding Randolph and Toronto evolving into a good young team, but each team has HUGE flaws:
Toronto - They can't guard anybody and did nothing to improve their rebounding problem. They will be good because they can outshoot anyone in that division, but they only had 2 good perimiter defenders (Parker, Peterson) and Peterson left and was replaced by Kapono (who can't play defence and who will either be a great 4th option or the next Damon Jones). The one good thing is they are deep and can withstand injuries (like they did last year when Bosh, Ford and Garbojosa went down for long stretches), but they are basically the Canadian version of Washington.
New Jersey - They seem to be sick of playing with each other. Watching them play Cleveland, it's like they were looking at the exits, hoping to leave early. This is a team that DESPERATELY needs a trade (Jefferson for O'Neal) and the Vince Carter signing will haunt them. Plus, Kidd's breaking down and Carter will definitely miss time. Who knows how Krstic will come back? And their bench is questionable.
New York - Yes, they have a lot of talent, but they REALLY can't defend anyone (especially inside). Plus this looks too much like a 'fantasy league' team. Marbury isn't the distributor he once was and I just see by the end of close games, he'll hog all the shots while Randolph and Crawford stand around with their hands on their hips. Plus there's no 'leader' on the team that can stand up and reign Randolph in. I think Randolph will do well, but there's too much potential for a big blowup here (tossing in the shaky coaching)
Boston - They have the worst 4-12 in the league and they are counting a LOT on a shooting guard with bad ankles and a point guard who's played one full season. I know, the offence won't run thru Rondo, but Bill Simmons made the best point about how Matt Maloney KILLED the Rockets in the conference finals because John Stockon manhandles them when the Rockets went with a 'Big Three' style. I just have a feeling that the other point guards in division (Ford, Marbury, Miller, Kidd) are going to FEAST on Rondo and that's going to end up hurting them. If they somehow get a veteran PG that can at least defend well (he doesn't need to score), then all bets are off.
All things being equal, I think New Jersey will be the best team, only because they have familiarity with each other, have the best coach in the division (although that's not really saying much) and I just can't shake the fact that they will pull the trigger on the Jefferson/O'Neal deal. I really wouldn't be suprised if only New Jersey and Toronto make the playoffs.
Kevin Kelly: "Mr. Austin, would you like to comment on Wade Keller's Take that endorsing the XFL hurts your anti-authority character?"
Steve Austin: "Oh shit, he actually said that? I thought the boys in the back were ribbing me!"
Kelly: "No, he really said that. Did they tell you the part about you sitting in the stands, looking all skeptical?"
Austin: "AHAHAHAHAHAHA. Yeah... oh man that was too much."
I'm still not convinced that smallball works in the playoffs, but if they don't run themselves into the ground in April, they might prove the exception to the rule. But what you'll see is a plan similar (at least to start)