Most of the trade talk around the league has focused on Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard, but the Celtics have dealt with their share of trade rumors since the lockout was lifted in December. Ray Allen, Rajon Rondo and Paul Pierce have all been parts of various rumors of various believability, and Kevin Garnett would be an attractive player to most teams if his contract, which expires at the end of this season, wasn't so large.
Rondo was the subject of the heaviest trade talk before the season, when the New Orleans Hornets were known to be shopping Chris Paul. An agreement was never reached, and Celtics president of basketball operations and Rondo went to great lengths to declare there were no hard feelings. The discussion was rekindled last week, however, when Rondo drew a two-game suspension and some reports questioned whether the Celtics still want to deal with their moody point guard.
Pierce may still be Boston's best all-around player, but until he scored 18 points or more in the final three games before the break, he had been on something of a slump. Pierce's season scoring average is down to 17.6 points per game, the lowest since his rookie year, and he's matching the worst shooting season of his career.
Field goal percentage is no problem for Allen, who is shooting at a .485 clip from 3-point land. The Celtics need to find ways to get him open, as he's taking a career-low 10.8 points per game. Another team with a dominate inside player or a more free-flowing offense might be able to make better use of Allen's shooting prowess.
Any team would love to have Garnett's defensive presence, but is he worth the fourth-highest salary at this point in his career? Any trade partner would have to do some creative arithmetic to make a deal work under the collective bargaining agreement's salary-matching rules, and all the trouble might not be worth for a player who has logged almost 45,000 career minutes on the court.
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