|Posted by paul on January 17, 2012 at 9:20 AM|
One of the most important consequences of The Trade that is never discussed, in my opinion, is how it affected the age makeup of the team. Before The Trade, there was a kind of balance on the team between the old lions (the Big Three) and the young lions (Perkins and Rondo). The bench too had a kind of balance, some young guys and some older guys. Now the team is pretty much Rondo, four old guys, and a bunch of young guys on the bench who have little standing on the team.
You'll never see anyone talk about this, but imagine yourself into Rondo's shoes. You want to start making some changes to the way the team plays. You want to start adapting the team to your talents and skills. You are a young anc creative player just entering your prime. What are your chances of getting anywhere with this? Sure, once in a while the Old Ones will say something nice about how 'it's your team now'. Then they go right back to the ways they've gotten used to doing things.
Notice too that whenever you try to assert yourself, the Old Ones start grumbling about how you are trying to do too much. They act like they really care about you. They are worried that you might be wearing yourself out. They really want to help you. Paul especially is there to make sure you don't wear yourself out handling the ball too much. You find yourself sitting in your corner in the lockerroom, keeping to yourself, fuming silently. If you make a mistake, you know you'll hear about it in the next team tape session. If you try to say something, they tell you that you are an irresponsible blamer. You learn to shut up, but sometimes you just can't stand it anymore, and you go off. Eventually that hits the newspapers and gets around the league. Now you have a reputation as a 'problem child'. The Old Ones remind you that no one in the league wants you, so you'd better do things their way.
Am I a fly on the wall of the Celtics lockerroom? No. I don't know what goes on. But I don't think one has to actually see what is going on to have a pretty good idea what the dynamic is. When Perkins was traded, an old team became a lot older, and Rondo became a lot more isolated, as the only young lion with standing on an old lions team.