Danny has taken his share of abuse for the Celtics fortunes over the past 3 years. When he came to the job he said that he had a 5 year plan to rebuild the Celtics and get them back to contention. His plan was to gather "chips" and then trade them for established stars. Many fans were disillusioned with the "youth movement" and felt that the Celtics were years away from contending, if ever. But what most of us forgot was Danny's initial vision of gathering trading chips. Some of his moves were lateral but others were trading one chip for another just slightly more valuable financially or on the court or that would give us a draft pick he could parlay into a player or use as a chip. Here is a look at Danny's road to building the team that has everyone so excited now.
Danny traded Darius Songaila to Sacramento and received 2 second round pics in return. These picks were used to draft Brandon Hunter in 2003 and Orien Greene in 2005. This move didn't really amount to much as Hunter was taken in the expansion draft and Greene was placed on waivers so it was more or less a dead end move.
In Danny's first draft, he picked Troy Bell at #16 and Dahntay Jones at #20. He then traded these two players for Marcus Banks, who was picked 13th and Kendrick Perkins, who was picked 27th. Obviously, Banks was a mistake because he didn't work out in Boston and now isn't working out in Phoenix. Perk, on the other hand, is poised to become a top center in the NBA and is key to the Celtics hopes for this season.
In 2003, Danny signed Mike James as a free agent to a one year contact worth $640,000. James averaged 10.7 points and 4.4 assists while he was with the Celtics.
Danny traded J.R. Bremer, who had been with the Celtics for 2 seasons, and Bruno Sundov, who had played 23 games with the Celtics, to Cavs for Jumaine Jones and a second round pick. This pick was later traded back to the Celtics as part of the Ricky Davis deal and was used to take Ryan Gomes. Jones was injured and only played in 42 games for the Celtics in the 2003-04 season.
Before the 2003-04 season, Danny made the biggest move of his tenure so far when he traded Antoine Walker and Tony Delk to the Mavericks for Raef LaFrentz, Jiri Welsch, Chris Mills and a first round pick that Danny would use to take Delonte West. Raef's knees gave out and he played in only 17 games that season before having knee surgery but he would go on to be the only Celtic who played in all 82 games the next season. Jiri Welsh didn't work out as Danny had hoped and would later be traded for a draft pick that would be traded to Phoenix for Rajon Rondo.
In the middle of the 2003-04 season Danny once again made a major trade when he sent Tony Battie, Eric Williams and Kedrick Brown to the Cavs for Ricky Davis, Chris Mihm, Michael Stewart, and that second round pick that I mentioned earlier. Ricky played some solid basketball for the Celtics and although there were rumors that he caused some problems in the locker room, he always played all out, giving 110% out on the court.
Also in the 2003-04 season, Danny traded Chris Mills and Mike James to Detroit for Chucky Atkins and a first round pick that would be used to take Tony Allen. Chucky paid dividends in that he led the Celtics into the playoffs that season.
After the season, Danny traded Chucky Atkins, Chris Mihm, and Jumaine Jones for Gary Payton, Rick Fox (who chose to retire rather than play that season with the Celtics), a first round pick and cash considerations. Payton at first didn't want to come to the Celtics, but when he finally reported, he gave us a very good year and helped to mentor our young point guards.
Mark Blount had a great season in his contract year and at the end of the season, Danny signed him to a six year deal at over 6 million a year. At the time, this looked like a good deal because Blount had a great season previous to the signing and looked like he was going to be a very good offensively minded center. No one could envision the cancerous malcontent that Blount would become.
In the 2004 draft, Danny hit the jackpot when he picked Al Jefferson with the 15th pick, Delonte West with the 24th pick and Tony Allen with the 25th pick along with Justin Reed in the second round. Delonte was key in bringing Ray Allen to Boston and Al Jefferson was the key to the Garnett trade. Tony Allen could be very crucial to this season for the Celtics if he can bounce back from his injury to get back to where he was last season before going down.
During the 2004-05 season, Danny traded Walter McCarty to Phoenix for a second round pick. This pick would later be traded to Denver for the rights to Leon Powe who I believe is going to be a very good player.
During the 2004-05 season, Danny traded Gary Payton, Tom Gugliotta, Michael Stewart, and a first round pick to bring Antoine Walker back to Boston for a second run. In an ironic twist, this pick was traded by Atlanta to Phoenix and would be used to take Rondo for whom we would trade the Cleveland pick. Payton was waived by Atlanta and resigned with Boston and the Celtics made the playoffs but Rick Carlisle out-coached Doc and the Celtics didn't make it out of the first round.
At the end of that season, Walker was looking for a long term contract that Boston didn't want to give so they arranged a sign and trade with Miami that brought back a trade exception, a 2006 second round draft pick, a future second round draft pick, cash considerations, forward Qyntel Woods, the draft rights to Albert Miralles and center Curtis Borchardt. We waived Woods and Borchardt, Miralles is still in Spain and we used the trade exception to sign free agent Dan Dickau
In the 2005 draft, Danny picked Gerald Green with the 18th pick and nabbed Ryan Gomes with the 50th pick along with Orien Greene at 51. Ryan was the steal of that draft. Gerald has not yet realized the promise that everyone has expected of him. He may or may not become a star but was another key to bringing Kevin Garnett to Boston.
Before the 2005-06 season, Danny signed Brian Scalabrine to a 5 year 15 million dollar contract. So far, Scal hasn't paid many dividends other than being a great locker room guy and driving Tony to the hospital after his knee injury, but with a veteran cast in place, he may very well be a valuable member of thise season's bench (or a trade chip to bring in that veteran PG that we need).
During the 2005-06 season, Danny pulled off the first blockbuster trade with Minnesota. Danny traded Ricky Davis, Mark Blount, Marcus Banks, Justin Reed and two second round draft picks for Wally Szczerbiak, Michael Olowokandi, Dwayne Jones, and a conditional first round pick (which returned to Minny in the Garnett trade). The biggest bonus in this trade was getting rid of Blount who had become a cancer and a malcontent on this team.
On draft night last year, Danny traded Raef LaFrentz, Dan Dickau, and the 7th pick in the draft for Theo Ratliff and Sebastian Telfair. This may have been the key to the trade for Garnett because without Ratliff's expiring contract, the Wolves may not have gone for the trade. We gave up Brandon Roy, last season's rookie of the year, but financially, this was a very good move for the Celtics and in the end was a brilliant move in that it netted us Garnett.
Last offseason, Danny traded Dwayne Jones, who came over from Minnesota with Wally and Kandi, for Luke Jackson and cash considerations. Jackson was waived after training camp but the Celtics did make a little money on the deal. Danny also got the deal done to re-sign Paul Pierce to a three-year extension at max money and signed Perk to an extension at approximately 4 million per year, which is an absolute bargain considering what bigs in the league are demanding these days.
On draft night this year, we had the 5th pick, the highest we have picked since 1997 when we lost out on Duncan. Everyone in the Celtics nation was hoping for the first or second pick and when that happened most fans were prepared for several more years of mediocrity while our young players grew and learned and blossomed. But Danny started trading in his chips and traded Delonte, Wally and the #5 pick for Ray Allen and the draft pick that he used to pick Big Baby Davis. This move was crucial, because it was the key to getting Garnett to agree to come to Boston.
The biggest move came when Danny used most of his other "chips" to bring Garnett to Boston. He has been trying to get Garnett for a couple of years and finally had enough chips that McHale wanted to get the deal done. With those 2 moves, the Celtics went from the second to last team in the league to a contender. Danny is going into his 5th season as GM and it seems as though his plan is working out quite well. Now, Danny is trying to get Reggie Miller to come back to help replenish the bench after all we had to give up in the Garnett trade. This is a very smart move as Reggie should fit seamlessly with the other 3 stars on the team and will give us firepower off the bench and a veteran leader in the locker room. Like Garnett said, this could be the difference between stucco and cement. Danny still has at least one more move to make to finish the team and that is to bring in a veteran point guard to back up Rondo.
Danny's one move that has yet to be scrutinized is his choice of Doc as coach. Danny has stood behind Doc and supported him all the way. He has given him the players who could make any coach successful. If Doc doesn't lead us to the finals, Danny's next move will be to bring in a coach who can.
good article. however u forgot to mention that signing blount to that extension based on one good year was a bad move. failed to go into more how doc has screwed us and lied about playing uptempo. ainge should take some heat for that too.