Danny Ainge made his regular radio appearance on Thursday, and the Celtics’ president of basketball operations offered several pieces of good news for Boston fans among one major bit of bad news.
Ainge, speaking with Michael Holley and Mike Salk on WEEI, dispelled the belief that there will be major changes to the Celtics this offseason. Ainge said he expects Kevin Garnett and Doc Rivers both to be back next season, and that he believes Paul Pierce has a lot of basketball left to play. However, Ainge also admitted that the Celtics are “more than one player away” from contending for another championship.
“We’re more than one player away, unless it’s a great player,” Ainge said. “It’ll be tough to become a championship team from where we are.”
While Ainge reiterated that he expects Rajon Rondo to be ready for the start of training camp, he had no updates on Garnett other than his hunch. Ainge will give Garnett about a week to “chill” before touching base with the 36-year-old big man about his future. Garnett is signed through 2015.
As for Rivers, Ainge insisted he feels the Celtics have the best coach in the NBA and scoffed at rumors about a rift between the two. In addition, he called anything Stephen A. Smith has said in recent days “silly,” but we already knew that.