Perkins: ‘This Might Be It’ For Celtics





Roughly a year ago, at the last trade deadline, he was as surprised as anyone when he changed uniforms, to the delight of almost no one in Boston. But in so many ways, Kendrick Perkins is in a different place.

He was almost in tears when the Celtics sent him to Oklahoma City but in hindsight, “Danny (Ainge) might have done me a favor,” he said.

That’s because Perkins knows what’s coming in Boston, and by contrast, what might be coming in Oklahoma City. The Thunder is leading the West and is the semi-favorite to at least reach the NBA Finals. The Celtics? Does the dismantling begin next week at the trade deadline, or wait until this summer?

“This is a good team, a good group of guys,” said Perkins. “I couldn’t have landed in a better spot, to be honest.”

He was traded for Jeff Green, who was diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm in December, putting his career on hold. Perkins signed a generous contract extension with the Thunder and discovered that Oklahoma City “reminds me of Texas, where I’m from.” Although Perkins’ numbers have been mild, his true value will be determined in the playoffs, which depend more on half-court play and defense; that’s why the Thunder made the deal.

Meanwhile, the Celtics are a rather pedestrian 34-29 since the Perkins trade. They received a jolt of pride with a thrilling overtime victory over the Knicks on Sunday but the vibe is likely to be short-lived. The signs can’t be ignored. Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen are approaching old age and free agency; the Knicks and Sixers bring more youth and momentum in the Atlantic Division and Rajon Rondo‘s name continues to surface in trade rumors, legit or not.

“I can tell you that he doesn’t care about that,” Perkins said. “He really doesn’t. He just plays. He’s like that. Maybe being mentioned (in trades) would effect other guys, but he just shows up and plays.”

The Knicks and Jeremy Lin discovered as much after Rondo dropped a wicked triple-double, as Dan Duggan of the Boston Herald writes:

According to [Kevin] Garnett, the performance wasn’t a total surprise. A nationally televised matchup with much-hyped Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin amid the swirling trade rumors is a recipe for a monster game from Rondo, who has 17 career triple-doubles.

“The thing about Lin is I think everybody who’s at the point guard position is going to be excited to play the kid,” Garnett said. “(Rondo) was nothing short of that today. I could see it. I could tell. I’ve been around him to know when he’s motivated and when he’s more than motivated. Tonight was one of those nights.”

Surely, Ainge would love to borrow Garnett’s superpower. As Ainge charts the franchise’s future he must determine whether to keep the uniquely talented Rondo as the centerpiece or trade him for a more stable presence.

“The trade talks really is a good motivating factor for him,” Garnett said. “If you know Rondo, he’s an I’ll-show-you type of person.”

Rondo certainly isn’t an I’ll-tell-you type of person. He was typically unrevealing in his typically brief meeting with the media after the game.

“I’m just playing. The biggest thing is we got the win,” Rondo said. “If you get those type of numbers and you lose, it’s kind of irrelevant.”

Would Rondo even want to stick around for rebuilding in Boston, though?

“That’s tough,” Perkins said. “That would be tough on anybody who’s used to winning.”

As for his former team, Perkins said: “I don’t know what’s going to happen. This might be it. I think if they get to the playoffs, they’re going to be pretty tough to beat, because there’s a lot of pride in that room. I”m not sure where (KG) will play next season, or even if he wants to play. But if somebody gave him an offer, he’d have to think about it, and I think he can help somebody. Who wouldn’t want a big man?”

Luckily for Perkins, the Thunder craved a big man last spring. He and the Thunder are going in one direction, the Celtics in another.

40 Comments

  1. ryz says:

    The age factor is there…and other teams from the east are getting better and fast…I think Boston right now are in a “mid-life crisis” so to speak, KG ang Ray are still effective though their impact have lessen through the years, and so is Paul Pierce, but Celtics will always be a team that finds a way, maybe not now or not even soon, but they will find a way just like 5 years ago.

  2. John says:

    I think if the Celtics trade wisely they’ll be good for a championship run

  3. Yall have no clue the importance Perkins brings to OKC. We don’t care if he gets the most rebounds or score points. We just need his body in the paint and that along will bring us our 2nd franchise ring. Let me break it down for you morons who don’t get it. His body in the paint is the reason the reason for all of our fast break points. His body in the paint is the reason for Ibaka’s blocks. His body in the paint is the reason for westbrook driving down the lane with monster dunks. His body in the paint is the reason Durant get 2nd chances at that killer 3 pointer at the top of the key. His body in the paint will be the reason we should take it all this year after a full year of playing together. Scream OKC now or forever hold you peace!!

  4. Trade Rondo for Westbrook? You must be out your rabbit azz mind…lol

  5. Joey says:

    It wouldnt submit

  6. Perfect trade? says:

    Trade Rondo for Westbrook!!!

    • ajpotpot says:

      no way it’s a lose situation for the celtics, trade rondo only if chris paul is the catch, hehe, ^_^

  7. nea_nelu says:

    that was a trade for the future and if shaq would have been healthy they would have gone all the way. on paper, pairing rondo with green is way better then rondo with perkins. Too bad shaq got injured because he still had game left in his tank. Still hoping that by some miracle (a very big miracle) to have a last celtic-lakers finals. Those were awesome, and just to see the players that i grew up watching get one last chance would be amazing.

  8. cappucinno says:

    “I think if they get to the playoffs, they’re going to be pretty tough to beat”, sure they’re going to be tough to beat, but they would be beaten anyway. Keep the same roster and they will never win the championship, Same reason why Detroit traded Billups in 2008, because they realized they would never win the championship with their squad at that time.. Detroit in 2008 were also a winning team, just like celtics now

  9. KO says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong wasn’t Garnett and Allen traded to the Celtics? The Celtics also give up a lot of players mainly Al Jefferson and West. So, why people keep comparing that trade to what James and Bosh did when they all made plans to go to Miami. People keep saying that the Perkins trade was the downfall of the Celtics. Perkins was a product of the system just like big baby. You will look good when you have two Hall of Famers playing on the front line along side of you and Garnett in your ear telling you what to do. Now he’s in OKC and look at Perkins stats 4.3 PPG & 6.3 RPG wow great numbers for a starting center that makes at least 8 million a year, Durant average more rebounds.

  10. Rayary4life says:

    We can all continue guessing on what’s going to happen with the Big 4,whether they will be disbanded,traded or whatever. All I know is that they’re not going down without a fight and they’ll gonna show everyone, yes including all the fans, haters, doubters, Kendrick Perkins and Shaun Powell what THE CELTICS are made of.

  11. BDub says:

    MR PLOW is dead-on right. The fix was in for that XMAS game vs NY. I smell a rat that smells like cheddar.

  12. BigMan says:

    Celts have this yr n thats it. after that, theyll need the draft and key trades from the bench to be good

  13. xStephenx says:

    Also, Perkins had only played a couple of games that season at the point he was traded, at the time the Celtics had a great record and it had nothing to do with Perkins

  14. scott robbins says:

    derrron williams is a great point guard scoring 57 against the bobcats. LOL!! that does not compare to Rondos triple doubles this seaeon. I could score 57 against them, what a joke.

  15. Boogie says:

    Cody what are you talking about? LeBron has a mind of his own and did what he did because of his EGO. Promising all these rings to Miami when he should of just settled in like the aging Big 3. Garnett and Allen did what they did at the peak of their careers and they know how to play together. The Perkins trade did them in, but they will rise again.

  16. cody says:

    Prix has a point.. since the 70s the celtics have only won 1 title and thats only because garnett and allen sold their souls and joined pierce because none of the 3 could do it on their own. A year later the nba gms adjusted to their scum move and they havent won since. I still blame garnett for lebron doing what he did, he told lebron not to be loyal to his team and then he gets eliminated by him in the playoffs. true dirty player gets what he deserves, he will never be a true great, just a really good player who couldnt win it himself.

    • J says:

      You don’t sound very smart. How did they sell their souls to join Pierce? THEY WERE TRADED smart guy! They could have just as easily ended up on the Kings or Warriors. When your GM trades you, their is nothing you can do but report to work or not recieve a pay check…

    • Audrius says:

      if you are not internet illiterate – there was a guy named Larry playing for Boston and Kevin, and Robert, find yourself what they have achieved with Boston

    • Lawrence says:

      HAHAHAHA…Cody, you are guilty of basketball sacrilege. The celtics haven’t won 1 title since the 70’s? Where were you in the 80’s sir? 1981, 1984 and 1986…hmmm…who won the nba title those 3 years? Boston Celtics. How could you totally omit the Laker vs Celtic rivalry from the 80’s? terrible. step away from the keyboard and take a nap dude.

      • jeff smith says:

        yeah as a laker fan the 80 s were the best.there will never be a great rivalry as boston and lakers..i still watch the tapes and noticed that seems like every play was a chess match.

    • alo says:

      the gms didn’t adjust to the celtics, celtics just had an array of injuries and bad luck. Get yo facts straight. Garnett got traded after he was past his prime to pair up with other older stars, which is different than Lebron and his young super friends. Wilt Chamberlain got traded in his later years, so did Barkley and many other superstars. Haters gonna hate

  17. mr-plow says:

    The only reason the Knicks “beat” us on Xmas was because of 2 made up technical fouls and a make-up foul for Melo at the end of the game.

  18. mr-plow says:

    “FACT” knows nothing the Celtics have always been public enemy of the refs and the nba. We cant EVER get a call AT HOME esp vs the KNICKS who you say is #15. GET A CLUE MY FRIEND

  19. Willy says:

    I think that the trade in itself was a failure in the short-term, and now it is in the long term because of that heart disease of Jeff (feel sorry for him). But the C’s need to give both Garnett and Allen a one-year contract so that they can trade them post-season for a good enough big young man. It may be now or never, but I definitel think it’s now. Rondo definitely shouldn’t be traded, and needs to be surrounded with talents before his contract expires, because he just wants to win, and the C’s need him.

  20. xStephenx says:

    Although the Perkins trade didn’t work out, I certainly understand why it went down. Perkins is a great defender, a mediocre rebounder as a center, and a poor offensive player. The thing is they HAD to trade him, his contract was expiring and he wanted more money then the Celtics had room on the cap/wanted to give a player who’s is, shall we say one-dimensional. At the time of the trade, the Celtics had Shaq and Jermaine. Obviously injuries messed that up, but before the injuries Shaq was having a pretty good season, and splitting the time between him, Jermaine, and Nenad who was received in the trade sounds like a decent rotation for the 5 position to me…. They’re all 7 footers. Look, Jeff Green obviously struggled when he got to Boston, but you can totally see the potential. He’s very dynamic, the perfect player to pair with Rondo, he could back up any of the big three, and good enough to start when the day comes.

    • haha says:

      yea…you are exactly right…thats how I felt when the trade went down…obviously it was a bit of a shock…but the business behind these teams are far greaters than normal fans would ever know…it looked like a right decision…and if shaq didnt get injured…he was a great fit alongside rondo…doing layups that perkins would miss on a consistent basis…it just happens that his body gave up and rondo was hurt during that series against miami…otherwise they looked decent against NYK…hopefully they get another crack at it this year…see what happens…

  21. FACT says:

    Except the referees have different favorites in no particular order as they are the ones that could alter a series.

    Rating of REF-favored favoritism bending the rules in the east.
    1. Miami Heat
    2. Chicago Bulls
    3. Boston Celtics
    4. Orlando Magic
    15. New York Knicks is on the last place.

    Rating of REF-favored favoritism bending the rules in the west.
    1. Los Angeles Lakers
    2, Dallas Mavericks
    3. Oklahoma Thunder
    4. Los Angeles Clippers
    15. San Antonio Spurs is on the last place.

    I hope the NBA Referees become neutral and not decide to miss call or make a bias call.

    • al says:

      Dont you think that its abit strange your list of teams are also the best teams in the NBA? Do you think those teams wouldnt be as good if referees were perfect? Are the refs the only thing holding teams like the Bobcats or wizards back? Your mind must work in mysterious ways man.

    • LIKing your idea says:

      i agree with all your top 4 but knicks in the last place and spurs i don’tt think so

  22. Coach Dee says:

    Perk is right. The Cs have one more run this year. they’ll devour every team in the East come playoffs. They have one final run driven by pride, the big 3 and rondo. If playoffs starts today, #7 seed v #2, right now, I feel sorry for the #2 seed

  23. prix says:

    Perkins trade was the biggest failure..even he ended up posterize by Blake Griffin..Ainge should have traded the small 3..they are aging and playing with a wheel chair already…too bad Boston fans will suffer another decade of non existence in the NBA..

    • Davon says:

      who ever u are, you probably never played ball and are an idiot….non existence? Who is this guy?

    • Davon says:

      U sound like a hater, homie….The Boston Celtics are an elite team, and altghough, age catches EVERYONE (idiot), they are still a threat…..17 championships, dude……clutch players who rise to the top when the going gets tough, and play thru trade rumors, written by people who have no life and have probably never played or organized teams…get a life

      • Renato says:

        When you talk about 17 championships you´re talking mainly about legends like Russel,Bird,Mchale.Where discussing the present.And it doesn´t look good for the Celtics.

    • LIKing your idea says:

      axtually as a boston fan i really was asking to trade perkins but not for green atleast someone with the same position and young

    • Jay says:

      Haven’t you guys realised yet? Anytime PRIX posts a comment it was likely be nonsense because (s)he is a troll. So don’t sweat it.

    • jeff smith says:

      prix u dont know much about basketball,one thing about boston and los angeles( lakers the real team) not our jv team.(clips) have tradition of building great teams.. history proves it..wow as a laker fan since 1980 i cant beleive i defended boston sortof