Wouldn't it be nice if a young, all-star caliber player who was athletic, blocked shots and rebounded wanted desperately to play for the Celtics? For all the talk about the Celtics not being attractive to young stars like Dwight Howard, Chris Paul and Deron Williams, there's a 26 year old in Atlanta who's been flirting with Boston for a solid year now. Part of the reason is Rajon Rondo. Josh Smith and Rondo were high school teammates and have continued to be best friends in the NBA. During the prolonged Summer of 2011, where one was you could find the other. When Rondo confronted a cameraman after Game 5, he was spending time with his family AND Josh Smith's. Josh Smith's wife was introduced to him by none other than Rondo.

Last Summer Smith said he wanted to play for the Celtics. The Hawks reportedly had interest in Ray Allen. Allegedly Danny Ainge's interest was only lukewarm in the high flying forward. Smith proceeded to have a great season this year and after being taken down by the Celtics in 6 games had this to say about Boston (via WEEI):
“When you’re playing in an environment like the Boston Garden, they have probably the best fans,” Smith paused, and then thought better of completely throwing Atlanta fans under the bus, adding, “some of the best fans in the whole entire league. Like I said before, I was a little jealous, you know what I mean?

“The fans out here are so supportive of their team,” he said. “You go out and look in the stands, there’s nothing but Celtics jerseys and I don’t see a trace of red in there, you know what I mean? Understanding that the fans are that passionate, it adds an extra advantage for them. A bad shot can be as good as a turnover when you’re playing against a team like Boston, especially with the fanbase that they have.”

So next time you hear someone say, "Why don't any young stars want to play in Boston?" please tell them well they do. Rondo wants to play in Boston and Josh Smith does as well. Josh Smith is a free agent after next season. If the C's want him they can certainly get him then. They could also try and trade for him this Summer depending on how willing the Hawks always dysfunctional front office is open to moving him.

JR 5/11/2012 08:12:00 PM Edit
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