BOSTON (CBS) – The first domino of the Boston Celtics‘ offseason fell on Tuesday when it was officially announced that Doc Rivers was heading to Los Angeles.
Now, Danny Ainge not only has to find a replacement for his head coach, but figure out what to do with Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce.
Sean Deveney of The Sporting News reported on Tuesday that the Celtics have a sign-and-trade ready for free agent Josh Smith, should they end up receiving a trade exception for Paul Pierce.
Deveney joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s The Adam Jones Show on Tuesday night to talk about potential moves for Ainge this offseason, including the sign-and-trade of Smith.
“A lot of it is contingent on finding a spot for Paul Pierce, which is much more easier said than done. There is no way they can get Josh Smith in there unless they get a trade exception,” said Deveney. “If they have to buy Pierce out, their chances of getting someone like Smith are diminished. Job one is to find a place to trade Pierce to, and that’s why you keeping hearing Danny Ainge say they don’t really know what they’re doing. He wants to keep open those trade possibilities as long as he can before deciding to buy him out or trade him.”
Deveney notes that just because Pierce might not be around next season doesn’t mean Kevin Garnett is a goner too.
“Garnett obviously has the no-trade clause, so he does have some power over what happens with him and his future. From what I understand he would be willing to play out a year in Boston,” said Deveney. “The Celtics might not be bad if they have Josh Smith and Jeff Green plays up to his potential, they’ll have Rondo back healthy and add Garnett to that mix, they might not be a bad team.”
“It’s probably going to be another year in Boston and then he’ll make a decision if he’ll retire,” Deveney said of Garnett.
As for who will be the next head coach of the Boston Celtics, Ainge said on Tuesday that search had not yet begun. But Deveney does not see a big-name coach like Lionel Hollins or George Karl coming to Boston.
Read: Ainge On Coaching Search
“I would be very surprised if they go from paying Doc $7-million to another guy that would command $5-6 million. I think they’ll go the assistant route; a younger guy who can really communicate with the younger players they want to bring along, and a good player development guy,” he said.