We heard a couple of weeks ago that the Celtics were keeping an eye on former No. 1 overall pick Greg Oden, and today the oft-injured center met with team officials, tweets A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com. The meeting took place in Waltham, Mass., the site of the C's practice facility. Though the Celtics could use some healthy bodies with Rajon Rondo and Jared Sullinger out for the season, Oden isn't looking to return until 2013/14. Celtics basketball president Danny Ainge told Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald that nothing is imminent.
"We're just finding out as much as we can and letting Greg know what we have here," Ainge said. "He's not ready to play now, but he's someone who's very interesting."
Ainge said he wanted to ask Oden about his physical condition, and refuted a report that the 7-footer wasn't interest in the Celtics, pointing to the meeting as proof. The Heat and Cavs have been the frontrunners for Oden's services, but he's been linked to several other teams, including the Pacers, Hornets, Bobcats, Spurs and Mavericks. The Wolves are the only team that appears to be definitely out on Oden.
The Celtics have the minimum 13 players on their roster, but Ainge has said he'll fill the two available spots before the trade deadline. Boston could use a prorated portion of its $1.957MM biannual exception to exceed the minimum salary on a two-year deal. Signing Oden wouldn't help them lock down the final playoff spot this year, but it could give them a boost once Rondo and Sullinger return for next season. Still, it remains to be seen just how much Oden can give any team at this point, and even when healthy, he hasn't been particularly productive. He's averaged 9.4 points and 7.3 rebounds in 22.1 minutes per game in 82 NBA contests, the last of which came on December 5th, 2009.