If I could be the owner of any NBA team, I would pick the Boston Celtics. Obviously after the recent trades, they're in a pretty good position to compete for a championship. Whether they win one or not remains to be seen. Assuming, that I am running the team for a span of one year (from Sept. 7, 2007 to September 7, 2008) here are the moves I would make both
on and off the court:
Player Evaluation and Signings:
This off-season: The Celtics have a solid team this year, but I'd still sign one more player for a minimum deal lasting one year. I will not approve of the non-guaranteed contract of SG Jackie Manuel, so we'll have roster space. Instead, I will sign a cheap, hustle, big to make the team's front line stronger; a guy in the mold of Adonyal Foyle (too bad he's on Orlando already). This center would preferably be a veteran but I'd be fine with an undrafted center too. Maybe Ben Handlogten or Oliver Miller if he hasn't been signed yet. If nothing else, I'd just resign Michael Olowkandi for the minimum deal. He's a big man who could clog up the lane on defense and play spot minutes if he needed to. That's all I'm looking for.
Next Off-Season: In the 08-09 off-season, I would resign House and Pollard. With the MLE (mid-level exception worth around 5.2-5.5 million: every team gets this), I would try to sign Shaun Livingston whose contract is running out next year. I'd give him the full MLE of 5.5 million, which is more than he makes now. He might get better offers but with his history of being injury prone, I might get lucky. I'd also resign the players whose contracts expired on my team such as Tony Allen. If I couldn't sign Livingston, I'd spend half of the MLE, which is 2.25 million, on two players. I'd look for a passing, defensive point guard who can knock down the shot/ or an offensive oriented big.
In the 2008 draft, assuming Boston gets a low pick, I'd draft either a scoring guard like Boston Collge's Tyrese Rice or a PF-C like Jeff Pendergraph who currently plays at Arizona State. Both of these guys are projected to go in the late-first round, which is where the Celtics would probably be picking (most likely anywhere from pick 20-30). If Minnesota or Seattle received the first round picks in the Allen and KG deals, then I guess I'd sign an undrafted swingman instead, and see how he does in training camp.
I'd keep the same coaching staff for this season to give Doc Rivers a chance. Then next year in 08-09, first off, I'd try to convince Tom Thibodeau, one of the best defensive assistant coaches in the league, to resign with the Celtics for one more year. If Doc did not perform up to expectations, I'd fire him. Ideally, my favorite coach for the Celts would then be Phil Jackson, but he'd probably still be working for the Lakers or retired. He would have been good because he has proven he can win with stars on his team and handle all their egos successfully. Assuming that he wouldn't be available, I'd make a run at Rick Carlisle, a former member of the 80's Celtics and one of the best defensive coaches currently in the league.
Ainge has done a great job getting in the talent, so I'd keep him because I don't think anyone else whose available would be any better. But if I could pick anyone in the league to be the GM of the Celts, I'd take Bryan Colangelo. He assembled a great team in Phoenix and is now assembling a very good team with the Toronto Raptors. He's widely regarded as one of the best GM's in the league and I'm sure he'd do a great job with the Celtics.
The Celtics have very little to offer other teams outside of their Big Three. However, I could see them pulling of some minor deals for a big man or a point guard. It's unlikely, but you never know. I would try to trade Brian Scalabrine and cash considerations for Juwan Howard. I know he's pretty washed up but the Timberwolves are looking to trade him, and he'd be a solid second string backup power forward behind Garnett and sharing minutes with Leon Powe.
I'd run my organization as a business. Firstly, I'd get the best available marketing people, and have them really build up the team. With all the excitement that was raised after the Celts got Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett, this shouldn't be all that hard. I'd raise ticket prices, but still keep the cheap priced seats around so that the games are accessible to most average people. I'd create stands all around the TD Banknorth Garden that sell Celtics wear: hats, shirts, shoes, jerseys, headbands, wristbands, bobble heads, everything. These stands will sell all these items for a lower cost then places like the NBA Store. I'll have coupons printed out and given to local restaurants. These coupons will get you a certain percentage off on all Celtics Attire.
Edit: To Mark Lawrence: Webber is demanding more than the MLE. And there is no way Utah would trade their young star point guard and ace defensive wing for three aging players, none of them as good as Williams. That would make no sense for them...
Answered By: Celticpride - 9/7/2007