Friday, January 27, 2006


Ricky's Gone - part 1 of an ongoing series

Tough trade to fully evaluate quickly, but here are some immediate negative reactions:

1) The trade essentially boils down to us sacrificing the blue-chip “asset” from Ainge’s one triumphant trade to unload the worst contract he foisted on the franchise. Throw in the fact that we’re getting back a conditional number 1 to make up for the number 1 we foolishly squandered on the Toine rental, and the whole thing starts to sound like a feedback loop.
2) Wally Szczerbiak? The guy is making twice as much as Ricky and signed for an additional year. This brings us into 2008/2009 with $25 million (around half our current payroll) committed to Wally and the mortal remains of Raef LaFrentz. Wally’s contract makes him hugely difficult to trade (just ask Kevin McHale), and his skills just don’t warrant that kind of fiscal commitment.
3) Wally Szczerbiak? Again, what the fuck? He makes us slower, more dependent on outside shooting and worse on defense. The idea of him and Pierce on the floor at the same time trying to defend younger, quicker guards and small forwards is the highest of comedy.
4) Doc Rivers – the trade is essentially an acknowledgement of Doc’s inability to coach this team. Ainge is forcing Doc to play Perk and Jefferson, something that, call me crazy, really could have been accomplished by a coach with a brain and a pair of balls and shouldn’t have necessitated trading Ricky. Just fucking bench Blount and live with it, it’s that simple.
5) Doc Rivers - also, there is clearly some off-the-court shit going down with Ricky, my bet is it has to do with his hold on the younger players and his general disregard for Doc’s coaching. We heard about Ricky flipping out a couple times at practice, saw him half-ass it on defense - that was all probably smoke indicating a much larger fire. A fire that probably could have been prevented by a competent, well respected coach who doesn’t motherfuck his own players to the local media.
6) Direction – two schools of thought on this, but to me it screams “build around Pierce,” and that, as we have stated several times, is folly. This trade does NOTHING to address our two real needs – a real point guard and more toughness, both physical and mental. Wally's not soft, per se, but he's not going to be mistaken for Charles Oakley.

That all said, there are some positives to the trade. We’ll see lots of Inmate #42, which is a crapshoot that can at least provide some entertaining moments. Gerald Green, I would assume, should be called up again at some point and actually get into a game or two. Ryan Gomes is now officially the 12th man (as opposed to the 13th). Marcus Banks finally fulfills the destiny I anticipated for him in the first proto-Doom piece posted on another blog lo those many days ago. Mark Blount and his poisonous bullshit are now the objects of scorn for a faraway franchise foolish enough to take them on.

Still, this trade still feels all wrong… RickyDFan, don’t ever become WallyZfan, please.

(We’ll have more on all this later)

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