The numbers are pretty stark — Boston was 41-14 when Kendrick Perkins was traded at the deadline to Oklahoma City, brining back Jeff Green and Nenad Krstic. They went 15-12 the rest of the way.
Danny Ainge justified the trade saying Green gave the Celtics needed depth on the wing and that they didn’t want to lose Perkins for nothing if free agency.
But the trade hit the Celtics locker room hard, harder than it should have Rajon Rondo told Marc Spears of Yahoo.
“It wasn’t like the man passed away or something,” Rondo said. “I think we put too much emphasis on it. It’s a business. He got traded. He’s very happy where he’s at. We still talk and I’m always going to have his back. It shouldn’t have affected us the way it affected us.”
Next season is going to be an interesting one in Boston, they are going to make one more run with the big four of Rondo, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen. They also have Jermaine O’Neal and Avery Bradley inked.
After that, there is nobody. Jeff Green is a restricted free agent and you can bet the Celtics will match offers, and Delonte West wants to return. But there is going to be a major roster shake up around the Celtics aging core. Can they put together something — in a limited amount of time after the lockout ends — that can challenge Miami and Chicago for the Eastern Conference title?
We’ll see, but this will be the last kick at the can for the team as constructed. It’s going to be interesting in Boston.