Help Wanted: Boston Celtics Need Back Up Point Guard
I do not want to see this become reality, but it might be what we need.
So far, the 2012-2013 Boston Celtics have looked pretty good, well other then tonight. We have one of the deepest rosters on paper, in the NBA. We added plenty of pieces in the off season and look like we retooled for another run. Even though we lost #20(yeah that's exactly how I will refer to him throughout the year on my blog), we have players that will his role. The Jet is ready to clear the runway, Rondo has new running partners in Courtney Lee and Jeff Green and we also added depth at the power forward and center positions, that will help us rebound and have a stronger defense. Even with all the new additions, Rajon Rondo will be making the whole team go, he is our engine. He is the perfect point guard for our team, he dictates the offense perfectly. It all looks good now, but what about when Rondo has to sit on the bench. Rondo averaged roughly 37 minutes last year, which i expect this year and maybe more, but who will be playing point for us when he is resting? After Keyon Dooling retired (which made me very sad, the jump kick he did in Game 4 against the Heat is iconic) we have had a void at the back up point guard position. I first thought Doc Rivers wanted Jason Terry to be our back up point guard, but since first signing him, he has stated otherwise.
“I like his skill set, but honestly I’m concerned about our backup point; I thought so far, the way we’ve played, Jason Terry is handling the ball a lot,” Rivers said before the Celtics’ 105-75 win over Emporio Armani Milano Sunday. “I don’t want that. I want him to be a scorer and I think him handling the ball takes away his best ability. And as a staff, we have to figure out something better for him. Courtney Lee the same way, I don’t want him overhandling it either, and right now with Avery [Bradley] out, we’re kinda stuck.
“We have to figure that one out as a staff and put them in better spots, and I think that is on us more than them. But when Avery comes back, when those four guys come together, that’s a pretty good crew. I would say the best guard crew I’ve had since I’ve been in Boston.”
With all that said, Doc has a few options he can do. He can use the guys that we have, the Jet, Paul, Courtney, and even Darko, to set up the offense while Rondo sits. He can sign one of our camp invitees, Jamar Smith or Dionte Christmas, trade for a disgruntled vet (Devin Harris after he gets benched for Jeff Teague) or we can sign someone, maybe even, the five time champion Laker himself. Here are the positive and negatives of each scenario.
If the Boston Celtics were to just have the current roster handle the reigns when Rondo sits down, it might make them less aggressive. Jason Terry last season averaged 3.6 assists in 31 minutes per game. I like him handling the ball from time to time but I agree with Doc, he is a scorer and I don't want him to lose his aggressiveness. Paul Pierce had stretches at the end of January when Rondo was hurt where he was averaging highs in assists and was a great team facilitator. Darko and KG have worked well from the post and made great plays by passing the ball so far during the pre-season. Our team is not selfish, we make the right plays and move the ball. I don't think as of right now, Jamar Smith and Dionte Christmas are ready. They both played well in the summer league, but they need more time in our system and more playing time, which Doc has admitted. I don't think one man has to replace Rajon Rondo when hes on the bench, but collectively as a team they can take chances at filling the void.
Sign or Trade
This one is tricky, because we don't have many pieces to try and trade for a backup point guard. Maybe if we do a trade with the hawks or josh smith, (not saying now but maybe in the future) we can get Devin Harris. The only problem with trading for a point guard is most likely they will have a bad contract, i.e. Chris Duhon. IF anyone has any ideas for a trade, fill free to post in the comment section. Finally, we have a chance to sign a vet point guard. Gilbert Arenas, Derek Fisher, and Mike Bibby are point guards that come to mind. Gilbert Arenas will never be the same he once was, and he looked washed up on the Memphis Grizzlies team last year. Derek Fisher is a Laker, end of discussion with him, and Mike Bibby looked like a corpse in the Miami Heat series last playoffs. None of them can play any defense and most likely would just be used for their shooting ability. I was really hoping we took a look at Johnny Flynn, but he is at the Detroit Pistons' training camp.
Personally, all of these to me aren't great solutions, which stinks because Keyon Dooling's retirement put us in a tough spot. Until another teams' trash gets released or bought out, cough Jose Calderon cough, and becomes available, we will have to do it by committee and hope it works out. I have faith in our team, but it definitely worries me a bit. Please leave a comment or questions below.