Though recent evidence has shown Danny Ainge attempting to surround Paul Pierce with the likes of Shawn Marion, Kevin Garnett or Jermaine O’Neal, none of the above are particularly thrilled at the prospect of relocating to Boston, writes Yahoo Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski. And as such, it seems Pierce — taking a tip from KG and Kobe — is ready to talk his way out of town.
According to a league executive, Paul Pierce has finally told team management that unless the Celtics come out of this week with a talented veteran co-star for him, they should expect him to make a public declaration soon after Thursday’s draft that he wants a trade.
“Danny is under tremendous pressure, from inside and outside, to get a deal for someone done this week,” one league executive said.
As hard as the Celtics, Pacers, Timberwolves and Lakers worked on the collapsed deal that would’ve sent Kevin Garnett to Los Angeles, Boston and Indiana couldn’t come to terms with what they were to receive. The Pacers were uncomfortable with Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom without minimally the Lakers’ pick at 19, just as the Celtics believed they had to get more back for sending Jefferson, the emerging forward, and the fifth pick to Minnesota.
There was some belief that Pierce was going to demand a trade upon his return from a wrist injury during the regular season, when the bottom fell out of Boston’s season with 17 straight losses. He didn’t do it.
Ainge and Doc Rivers traveled to Phoenix on Monday night for a shared workout with the Suns that included Florida’s Joakim Noah and Corey Brewer and Georgetown’s Jeff Green on Tuesday. If Ainge has to pick one of those players “ never mind China’s Yi Jianlian “ it appears that Pierce will soon let him know that he’s not interested in the painstaking process of watching the kid develop beside him.
Just curious — if the real reason the proposed KG-to-L.A. deal died on the vine was the T-Wolves’ Glen Taylor not wanting Garnett to toil for a Western Conference rival, how long did it take the Minnesota owner to realize which conference the Lakers played in? Wouldn’t that have precluded the discussions from even taking place?