Chat with Chris Forsberg
Welcome to SportsNation! On Friday, ESPNBoston.com blogger Chris Forsberg stops by to chat about the NBA and the Boston Celtics.
Forsberg has been reporting on the Boston sports scene since 1999. With his video camera in tow, Forsberg covered everything from Massachusetts high school sports to Boston's pro sports teams. Follow him at his Celtics blog.
Send your questions now and join Forsberg Friday at noon ET!
Chris Forsberg (11:59 AM)
Good afternoon, everybody. Thanks for dropping by. Let's tackle your Celtics questions on the heels of last night's draft.
How will the C's address there front court need. I dont think JaJuan Johnson kid will do it.
Chris Forsberg (12:01 PM)
No doubt. Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge stressed last night that Johnson is a power forward and the Celtics are still thin at center with only Jermaine O'Neal currently under contract in that spot. Boston will be in the market for more bigs, but they got themselves another 4 who can ease the loss if Glen Davis departs and maybe blossoms under the tutelage of Kevin Garnett.
By passing on Marshon, does that mean that the Celtics don't see the offense as a problem? Are they satisfied with a league average offense?
Chris Forsberg (12:03 PM)
No, Doc Rivers has stressed that shooting in particular is one of three key areas for the Celtics this offseason (size and finding a Tony Allen-like defensive stoppers also high on the priority list). My fear with Brooks was that his stats were slightly inflated by the number of minutes he played and the competition level. Boston needs scorers, but they went with a player they felt has a better chance of being a consistent pro.
Glenn Stern (Boston)
Was it ever the Celtics intention to draft Marshon Brooks? Or were they simply picking him for the Nets in a prearranged deal?
Chris Forsberg (12:04 PM)
Rivers said the Celtics targeted three players: Johnson, BC's Reggie Jackson, and Marquette's Jimmy Butler. Once Jackson went to OKC at No. 24, the decision was easy. Boston got the future pick and was able to move down a couple spots and still get Johnson. Brooks was not on Boston's radar, at least not at No. 25.
Nick (Brooklyn, NY)
By all indications, Big Baby is going to walk this summer. Is there any way the Celtics can use him in a deal of any kind?
Chris Forsberg (12:06 PM)
As much as a clean break might be needed for both sides, I think the Celtics have to make an honest effort to keep him around, if for no other reason than salary constraints and their limited rights to him as their own free agent. That said, I agree, I think Davis finds a starting role or more money elsewhere. The Celtics could work a sign-and-trade, but I actually think he'll find more money on the open market and don't think that will happen.
(Update: Just to clarify here, with full Bird Rights to Glen Davis, the Celtics can open their wallets and spend to keep him around regardless of cap situation. The question is, if Davis does need a clean break from the team, does the team instead try to work a sign-and-trade to get something in return. Davis certainly doesn't have to aid the Celtics in that process, but it might land him extra money if he's willing to aid such a deal).
Smell ya later, jerks. Good luck finding another starter!
Chris Forsberg (12:08 PM)
Too soon? That one hurt. The Celtics were going to be willing to maybe overpay a bit using their rights to Krstic to bring him back. And I think he would have probably been the starter in order to limit wear and tear on Jermaine O'Neal. Now Boston has to explore other options, including the likes of Samuel Dalembert, but must do so with limited resources (especially with the uncertainty of the next collective bargaining agreement).
Ray Allen (Boston, MA)
Ya'll don't really think I'm gonna come off the bench next year, right?
Chris Forsberg (12:10 PM)
Of course not. As I wrote last week, it's an incredibly foolish notion. Nice of you to offer, but, nah, let's keep the best pure shooter on the team with the starting unit.
Do you think Johnson and/or Moore will be regular contributors this season, assuming we have one?
Chris Forsberg (12:12 PM)
Recent history suggests it's tough for rookies to crack the rotation. That said, they're both four-year college players and given that, as of right now, them and Avery Bradley comprise the ENTIRE Boston bench, it's likely at least one of the two is going to find minutes. Look at Semih Erden this past season. Boston was desperate for minutes at the 5 and he found himself in the starting lineup by December. I think both Johnson and Moore have potential to contribute, but we won't know that for sure until training camp.
How did the Celtics fare in your grade book for tonight's draft? Should they have gone for a true big man rather than a power forward/center tweener like KG? In my mind the pick isn't bad..but is it what they needed?
Chris Forsberg (12:14 PM)
Let's remember the Celtics were in a tough spot. I think, in an ideal world, they would have loved to trade down and have gotten a late first-round/early second-round pick, and another selection early in that second round. That might have allowed them to pick someone like Jimmy Butler, then eye a leftover big man (Jeremy Tyler, Jordan Williams). Instead, with a lack of interest in that spot, particularly once Reggie Jackson got drafted, Boston picked what they felt was the best available player. You can't draft for need or you'll pass up quality players.
Andrew D (Florida)
So with JJ Johnson at the 4/5 spot, does that mean that Jeff Green slides to the wing to back up Paul Pierce? If so, do the Celtics need to find a backup 3 in Free Agency?
Chris Forsberg (12:16 PM)
At this point, you just stockpile quality bodies and figure that stuff out in camp. I think the Celtics prefer to keep Green at the 3, so the more serviceable 4's they have, the better. Even still, I do think they need to go find that lockdown 3 that can fill the Tony Allen role. That will take some pressure off Green to be that guy.
Ever glum, I wish we got another center. I guess Moore's alright though. I like Jajuan Johnson! Great stuff. But still....
Chris Forsberg (12:18 PM)
Chin up, Roberto. As Doc said before the draft, if there's size at 25 (a legit center size), that's probably concerning, because they get hooked early in the draft. The Celtics got themselves a very intriguing player who, if you're an optimist, might even be the power forward of the future (and you've got KG to tutor him now). This just wasn't a very deep draft for big men, so no shame in ending up with a pure 4 instead of a 5.
Kane (Jersey City)
What are the chances the Celtics bring Delonte West back and if Big Baby walks in FA what teams do you see going after him the hardest?
Chris Forsberg (12:20 PM)
I think the Celtics will make every effort to retain Delonte West, but I do think there's going to be a market for him. I also think the Celtics are hopeful that Avery Bradley can start growing into that combo guard role if West isn't back... As for Davis, teams are always looking for size. Let's remember Davis was a legitimate Sixth Man candidate early in the season and did it at both ends of the court. I think someone will throw money at him to fill up their frontcourt.
Its tough to excited about the offseason with the lockout looming - Is there any chance the sides resolve their differences for the season to start on time?
Chris Forsberg (12:22 PM)
I'm decidedly pessimistic given what's being reported from these labor meetings. The scary thing to me is that I don't think there's going to be a real crunch to get anything done until we get through what would normally be the offseason. Here's hoping the sides figure it out, but you see the NFL on Day 100 of the lockout and can't help but be a bit wary.
Kane (Jersey City)
Is there any chance at all Krstic could play next season - if there is a season - for the Celtics? I seem to remember him going overseas the last time he was a FA and then signing with OKC mid-year of the same year. Any chance that could happen again?
Chris Forsberg (12:23 PM)
His reps told me earlier this week there's no clause in his deal to return to the NBA contingent on the lockout, and they don't believe there's even an NBA escape after Year 1. Sure, contracts are made to be broken, but I highly doubt we'll see him back in the NBA next year (and even if he does, not sure it's with the C's as he's set to be an unrestricted free agent).
terrance (east chicago)
Do you see Moore earning a spot on the team nxt season?
Chris Forsberg (12:24 PM)
A roster spot? Sure. Second-round draft picks come cheap and he's a kid with a skill set this team needs. As for whether he'll earn a consistent role in his rookie season, that remains to be seen.
James (Derry, NH)
Hey Chris, Apparently Greg Oden is a free agent as of July. When the lock out is settled, (assuming there will be one), do you think Danny will take a hard look at Oden? His knee issues are well documented, and another injury prone big man may not thrill the fan base. But for low money his potential upside is huge. Your thoughts?
Chris Forsberg (12:26 PM)
I delved into that a bit HERE. Long story short, I don't think it's a realistic possibility. Plus, everyone keeps saying Danny was a Durant guy :)
Cameron (Greensboro, NC)
I think Doc must find a way to integrate his whole roster into the flow because our vets are aging and injury-prone. Do you see that happening this year ?
Chris Forsberg (12:27 PM)
Sure, I think he needs to loosen the rotation a bit if for no other reason to drive down minutes and give rookies a chance to develop. The difficult part is then you lose some games you maybe shouldn't and Rivers cited that as part of the "What if" game you can play about the 2010-11 season. What if Boston didn't play the Heat in Round 2, what if they had homecourt? Etc.
Sonny (toluca lake)
why did the celts entertain the idea of drafting reggie jackson? isn't he similar to avery bradley?
Chris Forsberg (12:29 PM)
Again, you take the best player. There's a reason that teams like Miami and Chicago were tripping over themselves trying to wiggle up for a shot at him. Jackson has a lot of talent. That's not to say Boston wouldn't have dealt the pick and drafted Johnson, anyhow, but you never draft based simply on need.
Nick (Springfield, Ma)
If we dont resign Jeff Green and big baby what kind of cap space would that give us? Enough to go after a quality center?
Chris Forsberg (12:30 PM)
No, the C's are essentially over the cap with just the Big Four. The team has to hope no one tries to blow them out of the water to lure Green away as a restricted free agent. Best scenario for Boston might be getting him back at the qualifying offer, then deciding next year if they want to extend him. Losing Davis and Green offers virtually no additional flexibility to pursue other bodies.
What's it gonna take to get Dalembert?
Chris Forsberg (12:31 PM)
Discussed that a bit HERE. I think it comes down to the market and what the new CBA allows teams to do. Presumably, the Celtics will have the mid-level to attract a player like him. Is that enough? We'll find out.
Nick (Cubicle, Woburn)
How many minutes a game does Avery Bradley play next year? Is this guy going to crack the rotation?
Chris Forsberg (12:33 PM)
Depends on how the roster shakes down at the guard spot, but I don't think it's outrageous to think he could play 12-15 minutes per night as a backup guard at both spots. He just has to stay healthy and show that he's capable of playing both spots after a year as understudy.
Robert (Punta Gorda, Belize)
When you say that Glen Davis can find more money on the open market, don't the Celtics have his Bird rights (assuming that's still part of the next CBA?) I just don't want to see them lose him without getting something in return.
Chris Forsberg (12:35 PM)
Yes, but Bird Rights only allow a team over the cap to offer a marginal raise (110% I believe), which means Davis could go from $3 million to $3.3 million in the first year of his next deal (then ramp up slightly from there). Even still, I think he'll find more elsewhere, even if a team splits its mid-level to ramp up that cash.
Gordon Wren (Tempe, AZ)
What happened to Stephane Lasme last year? He was not listed on the Maine Red Claws roster and internet searches provided no answer. Thankyou.
Chris Forsberg (12:37 PM)
So Lasme sat out pretty much the entire NBA D-League season after the freak foot injury in Maine's only exhibition game. I believe he's been out at free-agent workouts recently, trying to land an NBA job. He's the type of guy that the C's might have had interest in seeing again at summer league. Alas, the lockout is going to make it tough on these D-League guys trying to find work.
Hey Chris, met you at a game and you were all class, thanks for that. With the C's still owning the 2.4 million trade exception from the Daniels trade, are there any young veteran bigs you think they can get with that?? Jason Thompson maybe??
Chris Forsberg (12:40 PM)
Thanks for saying hello. Always glad to meet fans at the Garden and around the league. Who knows how trade exceptions will even work with the next CBA. I'm sure the team was willing to use it last night, but if there's a player with potential that's making only $2.4 million, chances are the other team is going to hang on to them and not give him up for a late pick in a weak draft.
Jan Vesely's Girlfriend (Green Room)
Hi, Fozzy. *winks, bats eyelashes* Wasn't I the highlight of the draft?
Chris Forsberg (12:42 PM)
Not going to lie, THAT was awesome. By far the highlight of an otherwise snooze-worthy draft. Not even New York fans moaning the Shumpert pick could top the Vesely moment.
Brian (Boston, MA)
What inexpensive pf's do you see the Celts targeting via free agency? Craig Smith?
Chris Forsberg (12:44 PM)
Getting a ton of offseason questions and I wish I could answer them better. The fact of the matter is that the new CBA is going to dictate pretty much everything about what Boston is able to do. What we do know is that, if things stay virtually the same, Boston is really left hoping to hook one middle-tier free agent with the mid-level, then must hope to get lucky luring players that want to win with the veteran's minimum. They had great luck last season (Shaq & Delonte's health notwithstanding). Can Ainge work his magic again?
Chris Forsberg (12:46 PM)
Here's what we do know: Rivers check list included a Tony Allen-like wing defender; better shooting; and bigs with athleticism. Once we get a new CBA, we'll be able to better gauge what the C's can realistically fetch with players that meet that criteria. Ainge keeps talking about potential trades, but C's clearly don't have a lot of movable assets.
Chris Forsberg (12:47 PM)
Alright, I'm going to wrap it up there. Thanks to everyone that dropped by. Keep the questions coming in the Celtics Mailbag and we'll do this again soon.