When the Celtics waived Dionte Christmas and Jamar Smith yesterday, speculation began on what the next step would be. Christmas had become a fan favorite and had impressed coach Tyronn Lue in summer league. He also had become close to Jason Terry, who took the rookie guard under his wing. There were several articles touting Christmas as having the inside track to gain one of the two open roster spots. His size, versatility and ability to defend were given as reasons that he was on track to make the team. So, it couldn't have been an easy decision to cut Christmas.
At the same time news came out that Christmas and Smith were waived, the fact that Kris Joseph would get one of those coveted two spots also was announced. This is no surprise as Danny used a draft pick on him and he has a lot of potential. The Celtics like what they have seen from him so far, but he has a ways to go before he gets meaningful rotation minutes. This would be a signing for the future. But what of the final spot? Could Micah Downs or Rob Kurz have moved ahead of the guards for this spot? I don't see it. Downs has played well in a couple of games, but I don't think he's sealed the deal for the spot.
Paul Flannery reports that the Celtics are looking to add another veteran player to fill that last roster spot. It’s possible they could add another player by the end of the week. Derek Fisher and Leandro Barbosa were mentioned as possibilities. It doesn't necessarily have to be a guard, however.
“We’re always looking. It would be great to get another guy, at any position,” Rivers said.
“We can’t forget that Avery is coming back so we don’t want to overdo that point guard thing. When you count Courtney Lee and [Jason Terry] and Avery, all three are ballhandlers. None of the three are pure point guards, but they certainly can play together.”
Some of the more intriguing free agents still out there include the aforementioned Fisher and Barbosa, Anthony Parker, Michael Redd, Kenyon Martin, Josh Howard, Ryan Gomes, Tony Battie, Chris Andersen, Gilbert Arenas, Rasual Butler, Baron Davis, Jordan Farmar, and Ben Wallace. I have to think that the Celtics had a target in mind before releasing Christmas and Smith. It will be interesting to see who they sign.