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Master Debating

By Eric Schlesinger

With the NBA season winding down and the Celtics seeming as effective as a Jimmer Fredette beer cozy, this seems as good a time as any for Fairly Reasonable Eric to have a debate with Panicked Eric about the C's chances in the post-season. Let's see how many times I can agree with myself:

Fairly Reasonable Eric: Hey friend, you're looking a little nervous these days.

Panicked Eric: A little nervous!? Have you been watching this team? They can't win at home. They can't win against terrible teams. Ainge really screwed this thing up.

FRE: Alright, I understand your concern. The Celts are 9-6 since the Perkins trade with some pretty bad losses in there (such as the beat down they received in Houston or losing last night to a Gay-less Memphis team at home). Putting aside how funny the term "Gay-less" is, these are pretty trying times for our guys in green. I can see how the trade could be viewed as a disaster, but here are some reasons why I still believe Ainge made the right move:

1. The Celtics were never going to sign Kendrick Perkins. The Thunder just locked up Perkins for $36 million over the next four years, almost twice as much as Boston was willing to offer the center. One of the most interesting things about this trade has been how it has turned Kendrick Perkins into one of the most overrated players in the NBA. Don't get me wrong, I love Perk. I loved the way he played and would have been plenty happy to keep him in Boston for his whole career. I believe he will be an excellent contributor to the Thunder this season and in the long run. With that being said, we're talking about a center with no semblance of an offensive game and career averages of 6.4 PPG and 6.1 RPG.

2. The hole created by the Perk trade is not actually that big of a deal. Sure we traded our best interior defender and are putting an awful lot of pressure on Shaquille O'Neal (36 games played out of a possible 70), but take a look at the other contenders from the East (Miami and Chicago). Which of those teams are going to exploit that weakness? Joakim Noah has less of an offensive game then my mom (but probably the same level of estrogen) and I have it on good authority that Chris Bosh often wakes up in a cold sweat thinking about Kevin Garnett.

PE: And what about Orlando? Dwight Howard will kill us!

FRE: First of all, I don't consider any team who's success depends on Gilbert Arenas and Hedo Turkoglu being competent a contender. Secondly, I think Big Baby can hold his own with Howard (Ainge cited this as one of this reasons for being comfortable with the trade).

PE: Fine, Orlando may be garbage (and watching them grow their awful playoff beards will be almost reason enough to root for them) but you're still missing the big picture here. We had the top seed in the East and now we're going to have to beat the Bulls in a Game 7 in Chicago. Clearly you weren't paying attention last year.

FRE: It's true we may have sacrificed the 1 seed with the trade but I would argue the Celts don't care about winning the top seed this year (or you would have seen Shaq playing by now). Either way, you're still missing the biggest point of all for why the trade was a good one:

3. The Celtics weren't going to win the title with the team they had. Sure that Celtics team could beat any team on any given night, but a problem the team has had all year (and only amplified after Marquis Daniels went down with an injury) is that Pierce and Allen don't have anyone who can spell them and defend a tough wing player. While Pierce and Allen can get amped to guard LeBron and Wade for one game, at their age they'd never be able to do it over a playoff series. This would have been the end of the 2010-11 Celtics. We needed a wing player capable of carrying our second team and guarding the games top players more than we needed a center to stop Erick Dampier.

PE: But what about team chemistry? Our team seemed to have an easier time playing together then any other team in the league.

FRE: This is probably the best argument against the trade. The Celtics genuinely liked one another and enjoyed playing together, but this is why the trade makes sense in February as opposed to making it in April. You can already see the second unit starting to gel and we still have 12 games to go (or 15% of the NBA season). We're going to see a different team come playoff time then we see today. Hopefully it'll be a team we're ready to go to war with.

PE: This all sounds reasonable, but what if you're wrong?

FRE: Hey, did you hear the Red Sox made some big acquisitions this off-season?


  1. I think you must have been caught in a moment of self-gratification to come up with a headline like that, no pun intended

  2. I catching headline but a little questionable.

  3. While most people are looking forward to the playoffs I'm looking beyond that to the off-season. It's time to break up the family and say thank you and good-bye to the big 3 along with Davis, both O'Neals, Murphy, Wafer, Bradley, Arroyo, Pavlovic and Doc. Doing this now would free up about $53,000,000, more than enough to start the rebuilding process. There will be alot of good, young free agents available this off-season. Lets start with coach McHale and how about a starting five of Rondo, J.R. Smith, Jeff Green, Greg Monroe (aquire), Marc Gasol. 2nd unit of Rodney Stuckey, Nick Young, Carl Landry, Chris Wilcox and DeAndre Jordan. Lets not forget Beasley, Love, and Hibbert in 2012. Danny Ainge MAKE IT HAPPEN.

  4. I love reading about what is old washed up, and fading away green cry-babies going to do next! who cares, bye-bye celtiks