BOSTON (CBS) – It is normal for playoff defeats to be followed with talk of the future.
One of those question marks is Glen “Big Baby” Davis, who is a free agent after a season that began with sixth-man talk but ended with a lackluster postseason for the four-year veteran.
“I love Boston, Boston is where I started,” Davis said after the Celtics season ended Wednesday night. “I plan on wishing I could stay but you never know. (Look at) the Perk situation. He’d been here for eight years, he wants to stay. But it just might not work my way. That’s just how it is.”
Two years ago Davis signed an extension with Boston after filling in for an injured Kevin Garnett during the postseason. Boston lost to the Orlando Magic in the East Semis but Davis showed he could step in and play with the starters, earning him the two-year extension. The Celtics were willing to offer three-years, but Davis wanted to his the market sooner.
Unfortunately, the new contract did not start well for Boston or Davis. He missed the first two months of the 2009-10 season after injuring his thumb in a fight with a friend. The contract included a “weight clause” bonus to ensure the 6-9, 289-pound forward would stay fit. As dark as the start of the extension looked, when Davis returned in late January so did his form. He took his spot on the bench and played a role in the Celtics march to another NBA Finals.
The start of 2010-2011 looked as if Davis would continue to be Boston’s main cog off the bench. He was his usual self, drawing charges on defense and crashing the boards against much bigger players. But as the season drew on, Davis fell apart. He looked slow and lethargic and ended up being a complete non-factor against the Heat in playoffs. He even said he needed to “Find Glen” after scoring just four with no rebounds in Boston’s 98-90 Game 4 loss.
Now it is contract time for Davis once again, who still believes he can be a starter. Whether that is on the Celtics or elsewhere is yet to be seen.
“I want to be a player in this league,” he said Wednesday. “I feel like I have a lot more to offer. I want to show the world my talent, if it’s here in Boston or here in wherever.”
There is no doubt that Davis can play, but “Big Baby” has some growing up to do. For all the poise and big game play he showed in the first three+ years in the league, he took major steps backwards during the end of the regular season and Heat series. Four points and 2.4 rebounds per game in a big series just does not cut it.
But this is the NBA and someone will likely make Davis an offer, and a big one at that. It will be up to Danny Ainge to figure out if “Baby” will learn and grow after a disappointing season, or it is time to move on and bring in someone who is more hungry.
Hungry to win and play the team style that is…