Remember that deadline deal The Nets made with The Blazers for Gerald Wallace? Of course you do. We all do. It feels like the majority of us have finally cooled off and are not quite as outraged as we were initially. Don’t get too comfortable though. If we lose that pick to Portland our collective blood pressure will soar through the roof. Draft Lottery party. My place. You’re all invited. B.Y.O.Z. (Bring your own Zestril).
Another angle in which to discuss this deal has recently surfaced courtesy of The Sports Guy himself, Bill Simmons of Grantland.com. Who doesn’t LOVE reading or listening to The Sports Guy? I sure do, which still amazes me considering how I despise Boston sports like kids despise eating vegetables. If Hitler had lived in modern times and was secretly a huge Woody Allen fan, I would liken my Simmons fandom to that.
Simmons recently mentioned in an article he wrote for Grantland “The Celtics are dominating in year five of the three-year plan” that The Nets “could have landed Pierce” at the deadline in a deal very similar to the one they made to acquire Gerald Wallace. The Nets opted to deal with Portland because Wallace was a full 5 years younger than Pierce and quite a bit cheaper too.
Did The Nets make the right decision? I think in this case they did and The Celtics also lucked out by not making this move too. Paul Pierce has struggled much of the season and his value was down, but he has been on a tear as of late. The whole Celtics team has been playing out of their minds along with him. Suddenly, the team pretty much everyone had written off has been reborn and are beginning to look like a legitimate contender in the East. The Nets meanwhile, are looking like…well…The Nets.
Injuries have stuffed The Nets this year much like the probable outcome if Nate Robinson tried to post up on Serge Ibaka. Even Crash Wallace was just lost to injury. When healthy, this is clearly a playoff team. They’ve come away with some impressive wins this year over teams like The Bulls, Sixers (Back when they had us tricked into thinking they were elite.), Knicks, Mavs, Pacers, and The Clippers. Imagine a full season with Brook Lopez, Gerald Wallace, and Gerald Green all in the mix. They’d be the 4th seed right now in the East, maybe even the 3rd seed. Boston would be trying to catch them after falling far behind earlier in the season.
Gerald Wallace is a great fit for this team. He makes much more sense in the long run. I do wonder what effect Paul Pierce would’ve had on this team though. The Truth clearly brings instant star power along with him. The same can’t be said for Crash, even though he’s a former All-Star and fan favorite player wherever he goes. Would Pierce have been enough to convince Deron Williams to re-sign with The Nets? If D-Will ends up being swayed to Dallas to play with one aging star then it’s reasonable to think he could’ve been swayed to stay to play alongside another one. All we can do is wonder.