Today’s a day of celebration for Celtics fans — Brooklyn Nets Day:
July 12, 2013.
You can almost express it mathematical terms:
7/12 —–> 7/11
7 + 11 = ….. 18
(We haven’t footnoted the above because if you’re a Celtics fan, you probably get it, and if you’re not, you’re probably not reading this.)
Now, journalists love catchy stories — journalists ourselves, we get it.
And they also love “winners” and “losers.” It’s what happens in every sports contest.
But if we discipline ourselves to avoid looking backwards with the benefit of what we know now, here’s what happened:
The Nets “rented” a slim chance of winning an NBA title for 2-3 years.
With a wealthy new owner and (then) highly regarded star point guard and some other pieces, there was a decent chance.
In fact, in Vegas, the odds of a Nets title moved from 300-1 to 12-1 in a few weeks.
The Celtics took a calculated risk that those picks — which didn’t start for three years — would turn out to have high value when the picks vested.
It was a good risk, especially given it seemed obvious the aging Celtic roster in place wasn’t going to hang any more banners.
Give Ainge some credit (as our Hunter Thomas did that season). He may well have evaluated the people he was negotiating with and decided there was a really good chance the Nets would be stinking it up.
But the Nets appeared to have the money and the determination to buy star players ad infinitum.
Two straight top-3 picks and a likely third one? Thank you, Captain Hindsight, but it was hardly obvious at the time.
So let’s celebrate — but remember why….
We’re celebrating the ability to assess value intelligently in real time.
(If someone wants to sell the Celtics a Tardis, we’ll chip in, but we’re not aware of any — and we checked on Amazon.com.)
So happy July 12, Danny Ainge — and Celtics fans everywhere.
— Celtics 24/7 (@celts247) July 12, 2017