The 2011 NBA trade deadline came in like a lamb and went out like a lion for sure. What was thought to be a slow trade deadline ended with a flurry of deals being made. Now that the trades have been settled, teams will begin their annual process of shedding salary by orchestrating buyouts for their overpaid/under performing stars.
Teams have until March 1st to sign a waived player in order to have the player eligible for post season play. Just like the trade deadline, the buyout rumors are in full force.
Said Boston Celtics team president Danny Ainge: “Our team is still not whole, we started out great. We played great basketball with Shaq in the middle. I think it’ll be easier for Shaq to return in a starting position, which I think he has earned with his play this year.”
Let’s take a look at some of the rumors involving the Boston Celtics:
Troy Murphy: Murphy has been labeled as the prize of the 2011 buyout season. The versatile big men can bang down low and stretch the perimeter with his ability to shoot the ball. Last week it seemed like Murphy was a lock to join the Boston Celtics and we hear today that Golden State, who are pretty thin in the middle, may just hold onto him to strengthen their roster in hopes of landing a spot in the post season. If he is waived, the Celtics, Knicks, Lakers and Heat will look to sign him.
Leon Powe: Old friend Leon Powe got the buyout ball running by reaching an agreement with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday. Powe has listed Boston as his top choice and rumors have been circulating that the Lakers, Knicks and Grizzlies are also interested.
Mike Bibby: The veteran guard was sent to the Wizards for Kirk Hinrich and sources have Bibby upset over going from a contender in Atlanta to a pretender in Washington. Bibby would have to give up a lot of money, $6.4 million next season, in order to make this happen. If he is available, expect the Celtics, Heat, Trailblazers and Knicks to line up as potential suitors.
Jason Kapono: Kapono has appeared in just 18 games for the Sixers this season and could be available within the next few days. Kapono would add wing depth to any team as his ability to shoot the three could make him an attractive signing. Expect the Celtics, Lakers and Thunder to show interest.
Dan Gadzuric: Gadzuric was sent to the New Jersey Nets as part of the Troy Murphy trade and could find himself looking for work as well. Gradzuric is not the sexiest pick, but the 6-11 center would contribute on the defensive end of the floor making him a decent short money signing. Expect the Celtics, Hornets and Knicks to show interest.
Richard Hamilton: The Hamilton saga is getting messier by the day. The Cleveland Cavaliers and Detroit Pistons had a deal in place, but the deal was nixed by Hamilton after he rejected a potential buyout offer. Now, depending on where you look, Hamilton may or may not have orchestrated a boycott of yesterday’s team shoot around. It is looking more and more likely that Hamilton will remain with the Detroit Pistons for the remainder of the season either sitting on the bench or being sent home away from the team. If he is let go, the Bulls and Celtics would be likely landing spots.
Rasheed Wallace: Another day, another 1,000 Rasheed Wallace rumors. Wallace may not be the first option for Danny Ainge, but expect the Celtics to put the hard sell on him should they miss out on some of the bigger names that could be made available.
Tags: Boston Celtics Cleveland Cavaliers Dan Gadzuric Danny Ainge Denver Nuggets Detroit Pistons Jason Kapono Leon Powe Los Angeles Lakers Miami Heat Mike Bibby New Jersey Nets New York Knicks Rasheed Wallace Richard Hamilton Shaquille O'Neal Troy Murphy