Despite the terrific start by the Celtics, there's one thing I now know about today's NBA that never has me feeling quite safe, at least until the trade deadline is over. The Celtics have the potential to be an incredible team this year, to the point where some think the only thing that can beat the Celtics is the Celtics. Anyone who thinks that though, obviously forgot about Chris the Buffoon Wallace.
As long as he lurks as a general manager, orchestrating an NBA roster, nothing is safe. No the Grizzlies certainly won't challenge the Celts; don't be ridiculous! But he has players on that roster with salaries that gives Wallace the power to do what he does best: make life miserable for the C's.
Let's take a look at the roster with the crucial information, courtesy of hoopshype.com:
First off, what a brilliant move bringing on Zach Randolph at that salary, especially when the entire notion behind gift-wrapping Gasol to the enemy was to cut cost. But I digress: the point of this article is not to bash the Buffoon's moves (for how he helped the Celts you can just read here: http://www.celticslife.com/2009/09/public-enemy-1_1675.html). This assessment is to analyze future damage that could be done.
Thabeet, Mayo and Conley in my opinion are their building blocks for the future. Despite them not giving Gay an extension I predict him to remain there for the season. I'll throw Marc Gasol in there too. No one's touching Randolph or Jaric this year, since the goal for most teams is to clear additional cap room for the summer of 2010. I also believe Stackhouse will be bought out and not really used as a trade chip.
That takes care of 8 guys. But there's 2 there that frighten me. Steven Hunter is in the last year of his deal for 3.7 million. He himself isn't a concern but could he be lumped into a 3 team deal along with a couple of other fillers, say to someone like NY (who's going nowhere) for an Al Harrington type player. What if the Lakers somehow acquire Harrington as their reserve forward? Doesn't that bench suddenly look a hell of a lot more formidable than it does?
The other player that concerns me is Iverson. He's still a weapon. What if Cleveland realizes that they can't compete and they need to make a move and deal for Iverson? Yes he's never been a 2nd fiddle who's cooperated but who knows. Is he likely to go back to Memphis again? He only signed a 1 year deal. What if Iverson begins talking about wanting a chance at a title? And the opportunity strikes for the Buffoon to make a bone-head deal?
Lastly there's some other filler guys he has. Throw them into a deal, watch the numbers work, and BAM! Just as fast as a 2nd round Wallace draft pick was no longer with the C's, Boston may have a new rival.
Obviously this is all speculation. But it's interesting (and nerve-wracking) to think that this jackass still could affect the season. Basically the only thing I hope for this season more than Memphis not making any moves, is the Celtics gaining home court throughout the playoffs. Sad, but true.