Re: Ainge's old thoughts on Bird make Perkins trade less surprising
posted at 2/28/2011 5:40 PM EST
In Response to Re: Ainge's old thoughts on Bird make Perkins trade less surprising
[QUOTE]past history............we don't know what would have happened if bad things hadn't happened to Len Bias and Reggie Lewis.....that was the bigger setback for the club.......
Posted by sday4x4[/QUOTE]
I agree, the deaths of Bias and Lewis were directly responsible for the team not winning as much as it should have - I often think about how many more championships the C's would've won if only Bias had lived. And I would have hated it if they really had traded Bird.
My point was only that Ainge's idea that trading Bird was the smartest move from a purely basketball/business standpoint is consistent with his move to trade Perkins. In both cases, Ainge saw more long-term value in trading a player (in Bird's case, maybe the greatest player ever) to whom the fans had a strong emotional attachment, and seems more concerned with overall depth and talent than with team chemistry.
Keep in mind, Ainge was making this argument well after Bias's death, but also before Lewis developed into a star, so this isn't an either/or scenario - although the Celtics would've been much better in the '90s if Bias and Lewis had both lived, it also could've been possible for them to trade Bird in '88 and have been even better set for the '90s if both situations had played out.
Again, I wouldn't have traded Bird, but (assuming Bias and Lewis had lived) Ainge might say, "look how good we'd have been if we'd had Bias, Lewis, McHale, Parish, plus two more quality starters/all-star caliber players and a couple of #1 draft picks acquired by trading Bird...." That would have been a pretty tough team going into the '90s. And even with the loss of Bias and Lewis, the players and draft picks picked up by trading Bird would still have kept them pretty competitive. So I can at least see the advantages of Ainge's mindset.
I think it's interesting to ponder the "what ifs," even if it is "past history." I just hope Ainge's old philosophy applied to this year's Celtics lets them bring home Banner 18 in June! I still like their chances, especially if Shaq can get back to his early season form....