The Boston Celtics are rumored to be in the market for dealing Kevin Garnett for Atlanta’s Josh Smith. On the surface getting the younger Smith seems like it would be great for Boston by dealing their aging veteran to the Hawks. However, the Celtics would be foolish to deal KG for Smith for a number of reasons.
The first reason is the Celtics need a center. Right now Jermaine O’Neal is out for god knows how long with his latest wrist injury. Chris Wilcox is great, but a back up job is where his size issues can be exposed less. Kevin Garnett is the team’s best center. He has shown that with his great defensive play and his offense has gotten a lot better. KG is quicker than most centers and can use his speed to get up the floor and get easy baskets. His range on his shot also frees up the middle as team’s centers are forced to cover him on the perimeter. KG is also forced to attack the basket more by playing in the paint. This is easier baskets for the big man. His defense is always going to be great because he is just so good at gaining positioning.
The other issue is the salary cap. The Celtics would have to get locked into Josh Smith. This would force them to not be able to land a second max contract guy. This might directly effect their ability to get a better player than Smith during the off season. Never mind the fact they would have to take on a bad contract like Kirk Heinrich’s deal to make the numbers match. They can make moves for guys next season with a ton of cap flexibility.
The Celtics have also been playing great basketball. Since KG has been inserted into the center slot permanently for the second half, Boston has not lost. They have climbed to within two games in the loss column of the fourth seed in the East. if they are healthy with the bench playing well, this team has at least a punchers shot at the East even against Miami and Chicago. Danny Ainge knows this and this means plan on Boston being a buyer for this season not a seller. Remember Go Green Or Go Home!!!!!!