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The Celtics free agent search: The Wings Conclusion

Posted by shawn cassidy on July 18, 2011 at 12:01 AM

We went over the top wings(shooting guards,small forwards) that the Celtics can possibly get. Let's review,and  rank the wings in certain categories.

The Injury prone player:

1)Tracy Mcgrady- Out of the three on this list. Mcgrady played 72 games last season. I think it's fair to say T-Mac won't average above 20 points a game for the rest of his career. He gave the Pistons 8 points last season,and he started for a good part of the season. He's another guy out of high school with some miles. Overall I think Tracy can put in some good vintage style games here and there,but don't expect it all the time.

2)Michael Redd- I have Redd number two,and it's simple he only played 10 games last year. Redd will be 32 when the season starts. His last close to full season came in  the 07-08 season. He averaged 23 a game. Redd has battled injuries in the last three seasons. Redd was still a 20 point a game player in 08-09 when he went down. Redd should be able to play next season. He took the majority of the 2011 season off to come back at full strength,and he didn't want to rush his injury. I would prefer Redd over Mcgrady,but I'm overly cautious about Redd.

3)Josh Howard- Just like Redd he hardly played in 2011. The reason I have him number three? He's never been an all-star type of player like Redd or T-Mac. He wasn't a huge scorer like Mcgrady or Redd. I believe Redd,and T-Mac still have some high scoring games left in their old bodies. Howard is the better

defender out of Redd,and T-Mac. The Celtics need scoring options off the bench,and that's a little more appealing to me now.

Caron Buttler I didn't mention because I truly believe he stay's in Dallas. He will get a contract,and he will want to be apart of the pursuit of a repeat. I would have put him number one on the list. I think he's got the best blend of defense,and scoring out of the three on the list.

The players out of reach: Players we want,but possibly can't afford. Unless their is a mid-level exception.

1)Jamal Crawford- He's a powerful scorer off the bench. He would be a powerful scorer if he laced up with the starting squad. He will win you a few games,and he will always impact a game. He's heading towards his lower 30's,and it's hard to get a max contract at his age. He will either follow the money or the title. He could get both if the new CBA is allowing the mid-level. You will hear me talk about the mid-level a lot. It's a key contract for title contenders over the cap. It gave us Sheed,and JO in the past two seasons. I believe the Celtics will target a center if the mid-level exception remains. Crawford could impact the Celtics,and that would be a huge jolt of scoring for the Celtics off the bench.

2)Tayshaun Prince- He's been on the block,but now he can test the waters.He won't get a huge contract from another team at the age of 31,but he can get some money,or at least more money than the Celtics can offer. He's an option for the Celtics,but the mid-level would have to be still here in the new CBA. Prince hasn't been an injury prone player,and he's consistent every year with an average of 14 points in 5 seasons,and other seasons with close to 14 a game. Prince is a top defensive player,and he can score anywhere on the court. It was hard on having Prince number two on the list. His defense is needed,and he's good on the offensive end,but Crawford's offense can impact the game so much.

3)J.R Smith- He's the youngest out of the two,and the Celtics need youth.The Explosive,and sometimes out-of-bounds shooting guard has become a free agent. How much will he cost? He's out of our price range,and that's if we have the mid-level next season. He's 25,and he seems to get better by the year. He's one of the best 6th mans in the league who could be a starter. With Melo out of Denver he J.R is the best scorer in Denver. I like his impact,but I don't like his bad boy image. I think he plays when he wants to,and he seems like a guy who plays under his potential. His defense is scattered,and his offense is too streaky. If he misses some shots he can become a brat on the floor. Crawford isn't to old,and he's a better scorer.



The players with potential:

1) Marcus Thornton: He found his game in a Kings uniform,but can he be that player elsewhere? I believe so,and it would be a good sign and trade option for the Celtics. Maybe including Big Baby?

He's a combo guard on a team full of combo guards. He put up some good numbers in Sacramento. Would he be looking at the Celtics?Thornton, 24, was traded midseason from the New Orleans Hornets to the Kings for none other than Carl Landry.

A second-round selection in the 2009 NBA draft, the Kings made Thornton a restricted free agent with a $1.06 million dollar qualifying offer.

He holds career averages of 13.6 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 25 minutes a game, while shooting 37 percent from beyond the arc. In Sacramento, Thornton saw his scoring average jump from 7.8 points per game (46 games) to 21.3 points (27 games) thanks to a large increase in playing time (from 16 minutes per game to 3. He started 23 games for the Kings.

Is Thorton one of those players that become a great player after being a  late draft pick? I don't know,but he could get paid from another team. He would be my top choice from  this list of guys.



2)Arron Afflao-  He's only 25 years old.  Affalo is a defensive minded player,and he's improved his three-point shooting. He was 42% behind the three-point line last season,and he made over 100. He scored a career high 12.6 per game in 2011. The price maybe too high for Afflao,but he could be a real option. He could truly be a help to the Celtics,but he wouldn't take any time away from Green or West. The Celtics could move West down to point guard,and that's the plus of West. Afflao reminds me of Bruce Bowen,but with more potential to grow.

3)Sonny Weems: We have seen this type of player in green during the mid 2000's. He improved last season,and that;s what you hope for when you draft guys with the low risk.He's young,but he looks out of our market. Sonny can fly high.An explosive leaper.  Good outside shot – three-point range could improve.  Good elevation and extension on his jumper.  Able to knock down shots over defenders.  Good wingspan.  Athletic.  Solid build. I don't think the Celtics can get him. I'm not sure he's the best option even if he's a young wing who could get better.If the mid level exception is around I wouldn't give him the entire deal. I would want to split it. I don't believe he's a real option for the C's. Overall he's barely on my short list.

The players that are up in age,but are healthy right now:


1)Shane Battier- Overall he must be in the top 5 for the Celtics.The guy that most C's fans want. He's been on the list of many C's fans for years now. He's a tough gritty defender,and he can hit 3's at a high rate. Shane has been a steady player during his 10 year career. His numbers are not overwhelming,but his defense with the tree point shooting gives him a great element on the market. He will be 33 once the season starts,but he would fit right into the Celtics game plans. He would be good for a two-year deal. If the mid-level is around then he will be on the Celtics short lists.


2)Grant Hill- HIll could be over the Hill very soon. Hill will be 39 once the season starts,and he passed up on the Celtics a few years ago. He's known to have a good relationship with Doc,and he's missing a world title on his resume. Hill will be remembered for his promising career that never took off because of injuries. He seemed to finally hit a stride in Phoenix. He's not the old Hill,but he's a good mid-range shooter,and he added a three-point shoot to his game. He can still get the ball in the paint. The big question is? How much is in the tank for Hill. He didn't show any signs of slowing down last season,but how longer can Hill go? Is he worth the gamble. I think he's a solid pick,but I'm honestly looking for youth,or someone in their mid 30's.




3)Andrei Kirilenko:He's a unique player,but he's also a underachiever. I'm sure he's out of the Celtics price range,but he could be a mid-level exception option if it's around. He can score,and he can play some defense. His major problem could be his lack of drive,or aggressive nature. He's battled some injuries in the past three seasons. Nothing major,but something to look at. Andrei is 30,and the Jazz seem to be heading into a rebuilding mode. Kirlilenko will look around the league for a possible title contender looking for his services. I would love to have him in green despite being a underachiever.


For guys like Moon,or Roger Mason. I don't look to them to impact the Celtics. I believe the Celtics have a better option already for taking a 15th roster spot. HIs name is Von Wafer. Some of the players could want too much money,but overall until I see or hear the mid-level is gone I will keep some hope in adding a player like Shane Battier,or Marcus Thorton.



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