Nov 30, 2011, 8:04 AM EDT
However, it didn’t shock those around the team.
Boston has been open to the idea of moving Rondo for a couple of years, but only for a perfect deal, reports A. Sherrod Blakely at CSNNE.com.
For the right deal — and I can’t stress enough how difficult ”the right deal” would be to come by for Rondo and his unique skillet — the C’s have been open to trading most of their players. Speaking with a couple front-office officials who have made deals with Danny Ainge in the past, they said his position in terms of his Big 4 is no different now than it was a year ago.
“He’s not pushing really hard to move any of his guys now,” one official said. “But he’s definitely interested in hearing what others think.”
If you are going to move Rondo for a better point guard, there are only a couple of options, so it’s no shock that the guy Ainge really covets is Chris Paul. Paul is a better player and could be a cornerstone of a fast rebuild of the Celtics. That said, it would be a real challenge to land Paul, reports Sam Amick at Sports Illustrated.
Ainge, the sources say, has recently discussed trading Rondo in a deal that nets Paul, but the Hornets don’t appear interested in a two-team deal in which Rondo — who has four years worth approximately $46 million left on his contract — and Paul would switch places. So Ainge has been on the prowl for a third team that could provide the sort of young pieces Hornets general manager Dell Demps would covet as part of his possible rebuilding plan. The more pressing question, of course, is whether Paul, who can become a free agent after this season, would consider signing an extension with Boston.
Boston would be a good spot for CP3, but if he has his heart set on another destination (hello Knicks!) it may well not matter. For that matter, Paul said Tuesday his heart is in New Orleans. Which is the right thing to say but nobody expects him to say otherwise.
The other problem remains that the Hornets are owned by the league right now. Can you imagine the furor from other teams if Chris Paul were traded to Boston (or New York or Los Angeles)? Until a new owner is in place for the Hornets it’s hard to see any kind of big trade.
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