As long as “basketball reasons” fail to rear their ugly heads, Doc Rivers is moving west.
In a deal that has been in the works for weeks, the Clippers and Celtics have agreed in principle to a deal which has the future Hall of Fame coach heading to Los Angeles along with the remaining three years and $21M left on his contract. The Celtics will receive the Clippers first round pick. The move brings along a myriad of thoughts, which have not-so-briefly been laid out below.
1. This is a two-for-one win for the Clippers. They upgrade tremendously at coach and the deal all but confirms Chris Paul will remain a Clipper for the next half decade. You did it, Donald Sterling. You freakin’ did it. Maybe.
2. Is this the first move in a series of transactions which will ultimately have Boston rebuilding from the ground up? Kevin Garnett has long been rumored to be apart of the deal which would include swapping he and DeAndre Jordan. And where does Paul Pierce fall in the equation?
3. This was the part where I’d say the Clippers are brave souls for parting ways with a first round pick, again. There was a good 75 words here in how the Clippers botched a potential young trio of Blake Griffin, Paul George and Kyrie Irving because of Identity Theft-level draft-related atrocities. But they’re (likely) keeping Chris Paul, so there goes that.
4. Let’s say Boston says screw it and enters full fledged re-build mode over the summer, which looks to be the case. Rondo isn’t rushed back (the same way Derrick Rose wasn’t, but then kind of was) and they ship Garnett and Pierce out of town while stock piling enough cash for the 2014 summer gold rush. Add that into account no team will ever publicly come out and admit such, but with the potential looming draft class next summer, teams will probably start tanking around Christmas Day.
5. On second thought, Pierce is definitely gone. I have a better chance completing my LeBron Finals MVP, Drake having the hottest album of 2013 and Cowboys winning the Super Bowl trifecta projection than Pierce has remaining a Celtic next season. If he’s on the roster after June 30, Boston has to pay him $15M. That’s just not happening.
6. What’s Rajon Rondo’s take in all this? He hasn’t entered Deron Williams territory yet, but in two years Boston has lost the greatest three point shooter ever and the franchise’s most recognizable coach not named Red. And through enough gossip convincing – right or wrong – both can be loosely be tied back to him.
7. This has to be the week from hell for proud Celtics fans. First, Ray Allen hits one of the biggest shots in Finals history to help the Miami Heat (of all teams) capture their second consecutive title. Then this news surrounding Doc. Then potentially the exit of Garnett and Pierce. The only way this gets any worse is if the Lakers kidnap Jim Buss, secretly exile him to Siberia and replace him with Larry Bird.