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Perkins exit leaves Boston locker room in tears

Feb 25, 2011, 10:31 AM EDT

NBA Finals Game 4: Los Angeles Lakers v Boston Celtics Getty Images

The Boston locker room is tight.

This isn’t your average NBA locker room, with guys who get along okay, but after the practices they all head separate directions with their posses. Boston was different. Call it Ubuntu, call it a bond formed by winning a title, call it whatever you want, it was real.

And the trade of Kendrick Perkins to Oklahoma City Thunder hit the locker room hard, especially the emotional Perkins himself, said A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN New England.

“There was a lot of crying, lot of hugging going on,” said Perkins. “And a lot of it was me.”

“It’s not even about a teammate. It felt like you lost a family member today,” (Kevin) Garnett said. “Tough day.”

“The only thing is, you hope that Danny (Ainge) and Doc (Rivers) know what they’re doing,” (Paul) Pierce said. “We trust in them. It is what it is. We can’t use any excuses, cry over spilled milk. Hopefully the guys we have coming in here and understand what we’re trying to do, is championship goals.”

Boston is going to get over the loss of Perkins in the locker room. Whether they get over the loss of him on the court — people we heard from in Miami and Chicago were happy to have Perkins in the Western Conference — we won’t know until May and June. If there is crying in the locker room after a series loss then Ainge will certainly hear about it.

  1. leearmon - Feb 25, 2011 at 10:50 AM

    It was most definitely a tough decision to make, but one that if you use foresight was needed. Boston has an old squad with only two young stars. Adding Green gives you promise down the road with Davis and Rondo, but the same can be said if they kept Perk. Maybe the training staff in Boston didn’t like how Perkins was healing from surgery. Maybe Perkins’ agent was asking for way too much for an extension. Maybe Boston heard rumblings that Perk had intentions of heading to Miami this offseason, so they decided to trade him to another young promising team in a different conference to provide a roadblock from that happening. Basically all of this is speculation, but as a GM you have so many factors that you have to weigh in these types of decisions. Clearly Ainge wanted to keep him, they offered him a contract a few weeks ago (which Perkins turned down). My only question is Perkins reportedly would have re-signed for $30 million. That was obviously too high for Boston. What do they think Jeff Green is going to ask for? If my memory serves me right he is a RFA this offseason. I can’t imagine Green not asking for at least $40 million, and thats being generous. Plus since he’s restricted, another team may drive up his price giving Boston a week to match or essentially lose Perkins for nothing. Its an interesting debate, is Kendrick Perkins at $30 million < Jeff Green at $40 million or more? Maybe. But conventional wisdom says otherwise, and as we all know Danny Ainge is anything but conventional.

  2. ibejeph - Feb 25, 2011 at 10:54 AM

    I wonder, when Perkins cries, does he still have a scowl on his face?

  3. rdssc - Feb 25, 2011 at 11:00 AM

    Noah 5 years 60M did the Celtics really think 20M was going to get it done? They knew he was in for a huge payday and the Celts didn’t want to go there. Good deal to get something now.

  4. hnirobert3 - Feb 25, 2011 at 11:22 AM

    $100 on KG being one of the guys that cried. Fake tough guy.

  5. savocabol1 - Feb 25, 2011 at 1:13 PM

    Celtics locker room is so tight why are they fighting with each other in practice?

    • andyhr17 - Feb 25, 2011 at 1:27 PM

      Hm, maybe because they’re competitive?

      • zackd2 - Feb 25, 2011 at 6:41 PM

        No, because it was the Big 3 V Rondo last year. All the Boston beat writers knw about it

    • pdub923 - Feb 25, 2011 at 2:33 PM

      I fight with my brother all the time, but I would still take a bullet for him.

      • captaindaddy - Feb 26, 2011 at 1:09 PM

        i hope ur brother gets traded :)

  6. d2o2s6r6 - Feb 26, 2011 at 3:54 AM

    What happened to Perkins is why I was happy L.J. did what he did last summer. Owners and GM’s don’t care how players feel about being traded. So why should the players care if they are put in the position L.J. was in. He was able to decide where he wanted to go. Where do you think Perkins would prefer to be. Oh my bad, he can’t make that decision.

  7. j0esixpack - Feb 26, 2011 at 2:42 PM

    The whole Celtics locker room is a very strong team dynamic – that being said, Ainge and Doc didn’t cause this situation – Perk did by making it clear he might not be back as a free agent

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