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Celtics go after Rudy Gay? Three way trade with Lakers? Not likely.

Jan 28, 2013, 10:51 AM EDT

Miami Heat v Boston Celtics Getty Images

With Rajon Rondo now gone for the rest of this season (and part of next season, and really he likely is not his old self until the season after that) it’s time for Danny Ainge to consider breaking up these Celtics.

But the first rumors flying around are not likely at all — that they want Rudy Gay.

First from Ken Berger at CBSSports.com.

One team that rival execs expect to be at the forefront of the Pierce pursuit is Memphis, which delayed but did not solve its long-term payroll concerns by getting under the luxury-tax line with last week’s trade with Cleveland. While Memphis can survive for the rest of this season without trading Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph or Marc Gasol, it still cannot sustain such a top-heavy payroll for the next two seasons. Pierce would keep the Grizzlies dangerous — arguably, make them more dangerous — for the rest of this season, and allow them to reorganize their spending as soon as next season.

The Memphis Commercial Appeal takes it one step further and discusses a three-way trade that brings the Lakers into the Celtics/Grizzlies mix.

According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, NBA executives believe the Grizzlies, Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers have had trade discussions that could involve Gay, Paul Pierce and Pau Gasol. The speculation is that Memphis would receive Pierce, Los Angeles would get Gay and Gasol would land in Boston.

I’m not buying it.

I’m not sure Boston is going to take on a lot of additional salary and Gay makes $17.8 million next year (Pierce $15.3 million) and Gay makes $19 million the year after that (and that second year is the first time you can count on Rondo to be healthy and back leading the team the way he can). Then there’s the simple question of if you think Gay is really a step up over Pierce — he’s more athletic, but whom do you trust?

As for the three way, I’m not convinced at all the Lakers move Gasol at the deadline. Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash want to keep him, which is a big deal around that locker room. Also the Lakers are trying to keep cap space open for the summer of 2014 and if they are going to kill that I doubt it’s for Gay. The rest of the three team makes a little sense for teams involved.

Marc Stein on twitter made a more logical suggestion.

But the rumors are flying and there are going to be a lot more of them.

  1. cosanostra71 - Jan 28, 2013 at 11:13 AM

    I’m a Lakers fan, but whoever came up with that rumor is clearly seeing things in purple and gold.

  2. bougin89 - Jan 28, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Let’s never talk about that 3 team trade idea again. We can all save time that way.

  3. timb12 - Jan 28, 2013 at 11:21 AM

    In any trade involving Gasol, I always feel like whichever team gets him is losing on the deal lol. Kobe’s trash talking has gotten in my head.

    • cosanostra71 - Jan 28, 2013 at 11:41 AM

      I don’t think any team getting him would be on the losing end. He is still one of the more skilled bigs in the NBA, with a lot of playoff and championship experience. He would be a great addition, but only to a certain team. A team like Boston, which is probably looking to start remaking the team with younger, cheaper players, a veteran with a large contract like Gasol serves little purpose.

      • lawrinson20 - Jan 28, 2013 at 3:14 PM

        Gasol WAS one of the more skilled bigs in the NBA. His skills (and health) have eroded, and his impact is not as significant as it used to be. And, he’s not really a great playoff producer.

        This article is suggesting two different things: Gay to Boston or P Gasol to Boston. Which is it? Also, not sure how Pau fits opposite Garnett. Rather the same position, except Garnett plays it better (i hate myself for saying that).

      • Kurt Helin - Jan 28, 2013 at 7:22 PM

        Did you watch the Olympics and the Gold Medal game specifically? Watch that again and tell me how Gasol has slipped.

      • lawrinson20 - Jan 28, 2013 at 7:29 PM

        Did you see his ineffectiveness at the end of last season? More relevant: have you seen him THIS season? Having recently relocated to LA, I now get more than my fill of Lakers games. All of ‘em. He was walking wounded earlier this season, then seemed to be getting better… then got benched/lost his starting position. If he is still so valuable, he’d be getting more minutes on a team struggling to get back to .500.

        I’m not saying he’s a worthless piece. Just that he’s not what he was, and he’s not any competing team’s answer — at least, not the teams we’re discussing in this proposed deal.

      • cosanostra71 - Jan 28, 2013 at 9:58 PM

        He’s being asked to play to his weaknesses without any of his strengths being emphasized. Of course he doesn’t look the same.

  4. aboogy123456 - Jan 28, 2013 at 11:28 AM

    I would not want that trade as a lakers fan. We need pau as a backup center and the inside post presence, and he has been playing great last couple of games. Without Jordan hill, we need the size. Rudy gay is good but doesn’t do anything at an elite level. Lakers would have to work him into the offense just when things are starting to click. Frankly if Gasol is not injured I just think he’s the better player, this trade won’t happen.

  5. lawest111 - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:21 PM

    The commentary on the proposed trade makes no sense. The Celtics would get Pau and the Lakers would get Rudy Gay.

  6. loungefly74 - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:58 PM

    just glad to see the Lakers are involved in the rumor mill…they know they need to get better!

  7. jedifriedchicken - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    I agree. I don’t think the Celtics would be hurting receiving Gasol. I do think, regardless of how bad the Lakers are currently playing, are the ones least in need of the trade, so it makes sense they receive Gay. Memphis needs to keep from going broke, and the Celtics are screwed for the next few years due to Rondo going down. As a Laker fan I can easily I have no interest in Pierce. We don’t need any more old superstars. Gay is tempting, but I’d still hate to lose Gasol, who’s a great player, but if they’re going to continue to not utilize him properly, then they might as well set him free.

  8. knickstape84 - Jan 28, 2013 at 7:44 PM

    Watch the Olympics tell me Pau skills are diminished… His health may be but his skill isn’t. The way Dantoni uses Pau is totally wrong. He should never sit out on the win. Thats why you think his skills diminished. Plus the reason he comes off the bench is because the Lakers bench is beat up. losing Hill and Blake was huge to a bench that was avg while they were healthy. this bolsters there bench with him coming off the bench. Can’t win games with a limited bench. Pau skills are not diminished.

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