Celtics executive Danny Ainge is expected to be active leading up to this year’s trade deadline and would be willing to deal away significant assets, but only if it would land a “special player,” A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com relays. “It depends on the player and it depends on his age and it depends on the probability of us re-signing him,” Ainge said during an appearance on 98.5 the Sports Hub’s “Toucher & Rich” show. “But most of the time I would say no, I would not give up [significant assets]. If you’re risking very little, it might be worth the risk. But I would never risk a lot for a small chance unless that player’s one of the top four or five players in the game.” Boston owns the Nets’ first-rounder in this year’s NBA draft, a pick that is likely to be in the top five. The team has reportedly been involved in recent trade talks with the Rockets regarding Dwight Howard and with the Nuggets about Danilo Gallinari.
Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:
- The Knicks are going to attempt to upgrade their point guard position this offseason, but Kings playmaker Rajon Rondo likely won’t be the solution, Ian Begley of ESPN.com writes. At issue for Rondo is New York’s triangle offense, which isn’t a point guard dominated system, Begley notes. When asked if the Knicks were a possibility for him in the future, Rondo, who will be an unrestricted free agent at season’s end, said, “The triangle’s not really a good look for me, I don’t think.”
- Elton Brand wound up with the Sixers because of his value as a leader, something that Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer says the veteran excels at being, writes Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “He is going to bring [leadership to the 76ers] in multitudes of hundreds or thousands,” Budenholzer said. “He’s one of the most incredible leaders I’ve ever been around. And as a person. To have person like that in your locker room every day, in your practice every day, on your bench every day, I think it’s huge value. It was a move that made sense for both of them. For the organization, it’s a really smart move. For Elton, to decide he wanted to get back and help the Sixers organization and help these young players and give back speaks a lot to his character and what kind of guy he is.”