What JaVale McGee Non-Signing Tells Us About Boston Celtics' Future – Bleacher Report
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During the past couple of seasons, Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge has been all about asset management. He’s sold high on stars like Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, trading both to the Brooklyn Nets for a bevy of players and future draft picks to help jump-start the Celtics’ rebuild.
While clearing out the aging parts of his roster, Ainge has also routinely searched for bargain-basement acquisitions on the free-agent market or via trade. Talented younger players who have seen their stock drop in prior destinations (Jordan Crawford, Evan Turner) have been scooped up by Boston as reclamation projects in the midst of Boston’s roster makeover.
For a few hours on Thursday, free-agent center JaVale McGee seemed like he might be the latest addition to that reclamation list. Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com was first to report on Thursday morning that the 27-year-old was close to a deal with the Celtics. Ainge confirmed Goodman’s report during an appearance on the Toucher and Rich program on WBZ-FM.
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Negotiations took a turn later Thursday, however, with Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald noting that talks between the two sides had fallen apart and McGee would not be coming to Boston.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports revealed that a failure to come to an agreement on the second year of the proposed contract created the stalemate. McGee wanted a player option, and the Celtics wanted a team option. Neither side budged, and McGee decided to move on. The 7’0″ center remains on the open market after being waived by the Philadelphia 76ers on March 1.
So why exactly were the Celtics unwilling to give in to McGee’s demand of a cheap player option for next year? It’s all a matter of asset management and committing to the team-controlled future core.
Boston’s roster situation provided a great potential opportunity for McGee to rebuild his value as a player. The team desperately needs rim protection as well as depth in the frontcourt, following a recent season-ending foot injury to Jared Sullinger.
McGee, 27, needs a fresh start in his new home, and head coach Brad Stevens has done admirable work developing young players and bringing the best out of guys who have failed to live up to expectations with …Read More