Monday, July 23, 2007

Why Jesus Shuttlesworth Will Save* the Celtics

Let me preface this by saying I've always been a Cetlics fan. Growing up in Omaha, NE there was no home team, so I immediately gravitated to the Celtics/Lakers rivalry. I have no idea why I chose green over purple, but it probably had something to do with identifying with slow white guys.

I know this post is a little (actually a lot) late, but it has honestly taken me a month to figure out seven reasons why this trade will help the Celtics (what can I say, Celtics fans are pessimists, but it’s time to turn over a new leaf). So without further ado, seven reasons this trade helps the Celtics.

1. Ray Allen (Jesus Shuttlesworth in He Got Game) is the #2 Paul Pierce has been begging for. Perhaps now Pierce won’t demand to be traded, as he was threatening before the draft.

2. "I could not be more excited about coming to Boston to play for the Celtics." said Allen. "I am glad to be back in the New England area and cannot wait to get onto the floor with players the caliber of Paul Pierce and Al Jefferson." A player in the NBA actually wants to play for the Celtics? Nice.

3. Ray Allen can shoot lights out. He’s a career 180 guy (when the sum of the three major shooting categories equals 180 or more): .40 3Pt%, .52 eFG%, and .90 FT%. This is the one reason trading for an aging superstar like Allen doesn’t scare me. Shooting doesn’t vanish with age, like quickness, if anything it gets better, Ever heard of Reggie Miller (also a 180 guy)? Try double teaming Al Jefferson now.

4. We were able to acquire Allen without giving up our three most valuable assets: Theo Ratliff’s expiring contract, Gerald Green, and Al Jefferson.

5. Despite giving up the 5th pick (who ended up being Jeff Green) for Allen, the Celtics landed two nice values in the 2nd round who could make an impact this season, Gabe Pruitt and Glen “Big Baby” Davis. Doesn’t anyone remember the hype surrounding “ Big Baby” after LSU made that Final Four run a couple years ago?

6. A starting five of Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Al Jefferson, and Kendrick Perkins will immediately contend for a playoff spot. How long has it been since Celtic fans have been able to say that? The bench, well, that is another story.

7. After the deaths of Len Bias and Reggie Lewis, the ’97 lottery and draft, the Rick Pitino era, and this year’s lottery debacle it’s time for Karma to give back a little. This is why Ray Allen’s two surgically repaired ankle’s don’t worry me. Basically, Celtics fans are due for a break (no pun intended).

People criticize this trade for a lot of reasons and it usually surrounds Allen's age (he'll be 32 when the season starts) and contract obligations (he made $14.6 mil. last year and is on the books for three more years). Well, I have no response for the age criticism, but the contract obligation is another story. Has anyone noticed the rabid nature of Red Sox and Patriots fans? Does anyone remember when visiting teams dreaded visiting the Boston Garden. Create that excitement again, and Allen's contract will take care of itself.

* By “Save” I mean restore a sense of dignity in Celtics fans to the point where we won’t be ashamed every time we check the box scores. I’m not expecting an NBA title here, but a 7th seed is not out of the question, is it?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Love the Jesus Shuttlesworth reference!! As a fellow Nebraskan, with no home professional basketball allegiance, I can find it in my heart to root for the Celts this year - love Ray, Paul, and Al.