I'm not sure I'm seeing this right, but it seems like some standard line in the sand is being drawn over which direction we go and major pieces are playing hands like a poker match or pawns in a chess game.
Pierce says he's going to play next year and would like to retire a Celtic, but he's made it obvious if management wants to move him, he'll tie his sneakers for another team.
KG seems like he's open to the idea of coming back but he seems to have a strong tie to Pierce and perhaps an even stronger one to Doc. Play the game right, KG returns. Play it wrong, KG walks away and retires.
Doc signed a 5 year contract this last year but as this year approached, he seemed a bit "sketchy" and not 100% all-in. He's giving off an air like he'll be back saying if he had to say right now, he would say he's back. The fact of the matter is, he hasn't openly committed to it yet. Doc may indeed want Pierce and KG back and maybe even more above that. Or, if you lose those 2 guys, Doc at least wants more than Rondo and some average players to work with or he just might not....commit. I don't think Doc wants to be around for a mediocre scrub team with not much hope of contending. He might be okay with going through the transition of losing Pierce and KG and moving on to the next era of Celtics. I'm just not sure he wants to go through being as bad as before the Big 3 arrived once again. Doc might think he's got more rings in his future (here or elsewhere). And having below .500 teams on his current resume, may not seem appealing to him when other teams look at him as a missing piece.
Danny is in a pickle as he almost should be. He's created the situation, whether right on schedule or a complete mess. Something doesn't seem to be working out in his favor. His tight grip on the team may be starting to get questioned. He might want to move Pierce, but what about KG and Doc? He might want to play his card on Pierce but what if that makes KG go? How does he keep the players he wants to keep happy, move the ones he wants to move and keep Doc happy all at the same time?
Like I said, I could be reading it wrong, but it's almost like all the guys privately know which way things are leaning and they are countering with moves (statements) of their own, putting pressure on Danny to do the right thing that interests themselves best. I think they all want to remain Celtics, but they all have their vision on how they want to remain Celtics.
It feels like a squeeze play on all sides to me. A game of chicken. No matter which direction this goes down, feels like something is going to give.
It feels like one way or another, this won't look like the same exact Celtics once next season starts and personally, as much as some of this hurts, it might be time for something to give. I'd love to see the whole crew (Pierce, KG, Doc, Rondo + major improvements), but it doesn't seem like the major improvements part of the equation can go down without losing one (or more) of the pieces.
This off-season seems a lot more dramatic than most and I'm on pins and needles waiting to see how this summer goes down. This is better than an epic storyline with a cliffhanger ending.