Celtics Central

Boston Celtics

Celtics Get Busy in Free Agency – First Targets Known

|

July 1st was the first day of free agency and many teams are off and running.

Not wanting another offseason like year’s, the Celtics are right there among the most aggressive according to reports.

It’s being reported that Detroit’s Rasheed Wallace (multiple sources) and Toronto’s Anthony Parker (Yahoo) are their prime targets.

Both have been mentioned in previous rumors, though I wonder if Grant Hill might be higher on the Celtic’s small forward list. Adrian Wojnarowski  thinks so and mentions a strong push for Wallace as well.

If they sign Parker, Anthony will most likely have to take a cut in pay from his $4mil plus last season, as Rasheed Wallace is expected to absorb the entire MLE of $5.8 mil, if he decides to join the green party.

Parker Possibilities

Parker is sort of a poor man’s Brandon Roy without the same driving ability. In fact, Parker is what many thought Roy would be as an NBA player – pretty good at many things but not great at any of them. Roy, of course, has put all those naysayers behind him to become one of the top players in the league.

Parker was drafted by the New Jersey Nets in 1997, was traded to Philadelphia, and played briefly with Orlando being waived. He strengthened his game with 6 years overseas (5 with Maccabi Tel Aviv, one yr. with Vitus Roma) starting in 2001. The former Euroleague MVP won three Euro league titles and returned to the States with Toronto and a solid all around game. He just turned 34.

Parker can do a lot of things fairly well on the basketball court. Anthony mostly played shooting guard for the Raptors last season, but at 6′ 6″, 215 lbs. Parker has the body to play against many small forwards. He has even played some point guard for the Raptors in his career.

He shoots the three ball extremely well, averaging 41% for his career. Essentially a jump shooter, 83% of his shots were of that variety last season. He plays competent defense, passes well, and does not turn the ball over much (30 straight games w/o a turnover 2 years ago at one point).

He averaged 10.7 points, 4 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and 1.3 steals in 33 minutes last season.

Need for ‘Sheed

Rasheed Wallace is a big time player who has been known to mail it in at times in the past. He can shoot the three, defends the 4 and 5 well. He is an emotional player, who, by most accounts is a good team mate. Always among the league leaders in technicals, he is a quote machine for writers as well. For all his bluster, I’ve liked him over the years.

I don’t think he will find it hard to be motivated playing with his friend Kevin Garnett and on a team with a real chance of getting another NBA title. The only question is - Will he be willing to come off the bench and shorten his minutes a bit ? I don’t see why not.

Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald reports that the Celtics are also interested in a number of other players including Antonio McDyess and Jamario Moon.

Former NBA big man, Mike Sweetney will attempt a comeback with the Celtic’s summer league team. The previously elusive and highly tattooed, red headed big man, Robert Swift will also join the Celtics summer league team, making things interesting, according to the Boston Herald.

Former UConn players Charlie Villanueva and Ben Gordon have committed to signing with the Detroit Pistons, joining fellow Husky, Rip Hamilton on the roster. Thanks to Ben’s stellar playoff performance against the Celtics, Gordon appears to be getting big money afterall, with a reported $50-55 million over 5 years. Charlie V. is reportedly getting around $35 mil over 5 years as well.

There is no truth to the rumor that Donyell Marshall has been contacted, nor Donny Marshall. It was said that Danny Ainge did offer Ray Allen to Dumars though. Joe responded that he’s got two Huskies coming already, but thanks anyway.

Things will happen fast and furious as teams position themselves for the best players in the first few days. Stay tuned.

Thomas Halzack