Once injury prone always injury prone
First off, let me just say that I love Danny Ainge. He is one of the best general manager's in the game and is the reason we won the title in 2008. At the same time, I can't help but wonder why Marquis Daniels and Jermaine O'Neal were brought to Boston. It all comes back to the age old question of whether is it better to bring in someone that has the potential to make a significant impact, or better to play it safe with someone dependable? In the case of Marquis Daniels, and especially Jermaine O'Neal, the risks far outweighed the benefits in my opinion.
Jermaine O'Neal hasn't been healthy in years. Marquis Daniels hasn't played a full season ever. It wasn't a question of if they would get injured, but when. Not to mention the fact that Jermaine O'Neal hasn't played at a high level in about 5 years and has never been a winner. Marquis Daniels had a couple solid years with Indiana and the Mavericks but has always underachieved in my opinion. People always talk about how he is a good slasher and defender and that is true. But if you don't actually do those things on a consistent basis it doesn't matter if you have skills because they aren't being used. With that being said, The important thing right now is Marquis concentrates on his health. A spinal injury is incredibly scary and we wish him the best in his recovery.
I always compare injury prone athletes to what they would be like at real jobs. I can be the world's greatest employee but if I'm always sick and missing work it doesn't really matter. They say half the battle is showing up but it is more like 75%. Give me someone that can stay on the court and that is consistent. This especially holds true for bench players. Bench guys don't need to be stars. They need to fill their roles on a consistent basis.
The question is do we make a move and if so, who do we give up? With the recent news that Shaq's injury isn't healing as well as had been hoped, the urgency to make a deal before the trade deadline gets even greater. Financial matters aside I'd love for the Celtics to go after Tayshaun Prince or Shane Battier. Prince would obviously be a long shot because of the $11 million he is due, but I've always wanted him on the Celtics. He's long and can defend three positions. He's a proven winner and from what I can tell a good teammate. What does it matter if he didn't play well against the Celtics? Who does play well against the Celtics. Our defense is sick. I'd also love Battier. Another guy that can defend and while he hasn't won in the NBA much, he was a winner in college.
The bottom line is we can't just HOPE that people will become healthy. That's the problem. We just assume everyone is magically going to become healthy for the playoffs. If you can make a deal for an impact guy off the bench you do it as long as it doesn't involve Glen Davis or Delonte. I like Erden and Harangody but we aren't building for the future right now. We are playing to win this year and you do whatever it takes to get a title even if that means sacrificing a couple guys that could help in the future. Here's hoping we don't rest on our laurels and have a sense of urgency.