Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Rumor: Perkins' name added to Ainge's ongoing trade list

Celtics center Kendrick Perkins’ name is the latest to be added to Danny Ainge’s growing list of potential pre-draft trade pieces.

According to Michael Felger on Comcast Sportsnet’s “Sports Tonight” Monday night, “We heard a rumble today, just a little rumble. Danny’s throwing a bunch of stuff against the wall as he likes to do. Memphis sitting there at No. 2. Perk and… [Bill Walker].”

In this situation at No. 2, the Celtics have three apparent moves. The first, and perhaps most sensible would be taking UConn’s Hasheem Thabeet. If they were to deal Perkins, they immediately lose a young, defensive-minded starting center to complement Kevin Garnett, who still has three years left on his current contract. If they were to take anyone else here, they’d have a huge hole to fill at the five spot, which is essential in making a championship run, especially for a defensive team like the Celtics. At seven-foot-two, Thabeet can immediately contribute on the defensive end as a natural shot blocker and rebounder next to Garnett.

If Ainge values upside over need, he may take either Spain’s Ricky Rubio or Memphis guard Tyreke Evans, whom he reportedly has interest in. Either would create a crowded Boston backcourt, assuming the team keeps Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo, which at this point, are big assumptions.

Of course, this is all speculation, but it seems as though Ainge is exercising all potential trade options before the June 25 draft. The only names that haven’t come up over the past few weeks are Garnett and captain Paul Pierce.

The Grizzlies originally drafted Perkins in 2003 with the 27th overall pick, then immediately traded him, along with point guard Marcus Banks to the Celtics for Dahntay Jones and former Boston College guard Troy Bell, who were taken by Boston in the same draft. The Washington Wizards selected Walker in the second round in 2008 before shipping him to the C’s for cash.

This story was written to run on NESN.com, but was not posted.

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