Sep 13, 2013, 2:07 PM EDT
When it went down, Celtics fans were up in arms — Boston traded Kendrick Perkins to Oklahoma City mainly for Jeff Green. Danny Ainge’s name suddenly came with a new adjective for Boston fans, and it’s one we can’t repeat here.
Since then Boston has defended the trade and as Perkins’ production has slipped some of the anger dissipated.
Doc Rivers now admits it was a mistake.
Speaking to WEEI at a charity event in Boston this week, Rivers said he thought it was a mistake because it exposed Kevin Garnett more and hurt him.
“I think so,” reflected Rivers, “because we needed the toughness. The one thing we did by losing Perk was we removed Kevin’s protector. I didn’t think it was a coincidence that, after Perk left, that Kevin got into all those little flicks with the other teams. Perk deflected all that.”
After Boston made that trade they never got back to the NBA Finals, although there were a number of reasons from injuries to the rise of the Heat that caused Boston to fall short.
What’s done is done. However, there are still remnants of the deal — it will be interesting to see how Jeff Green does this season with a lot more responsibility on his shoulders.
Oklahoma City hasn’t loved the deal either as Perkins’s play has deteriorated. However, Perkins may have a renewed role in Oklahoma City as they try to get back to the Finals and have to face teams like Memphis and now Houston with some big front lines. Perkins isn’t much use to OKC against a team like Miami that plays small (nor is he much use on offense), but he has a role as a defender against traditional centers.
- Report: If Kevin Love leaves Cavaliers, Lakers are team to beat in free agency 0
- Rumor: Kevin Love out minimum of two weeks, will likely miss most or all of series vs. Bulls 29
- Monta Ellis, J.J. Barea pairing ignites Mavericks offense, gets Dallas Game 4 win over Houston 5
- Wizards blow out Raptors to complete first-round sweep 17
- Chris Paul scores 34 points, Clippers win Game 4 to even series with Spurs 6
- Cavaliers advance to second round – but but maybe lose Kevin Love and moral high ground in process 60
- Mike Conley out for Game 4 with “serious” facial injury, no timetable for return 6
- Grizzlies start fast, hang on to beat Portland, take 3-0 series lead 2