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Danny Ainge better be right on these decisions

By Hector Longo | May 21, 2019

The options are so diverse, it’s almost comical.

With the draft and NBA summer league dead ahead (let’s be honest, no true Boston fans are paying attention to these playoffs), Danny Ainge faces a decision that could send his name (or maybe his No. 44) to the Garden rafters or place him on the unemployment line.

Option 1, and I can’t believe I’m about to write this next name, is to re-sign Kyrie Irving and trade the future (yes, it will take Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and at least one No. 1) to New Orleans for Anthony Davis.

An Irving-Davis duo again leaves Boston as the favorite in the East immediately. That didn’t exactly come to fruition in 2018-19, but chalk that one up to Kyrie’s uncertainty. With the $186 million super-max contract, there is no doubt whose hands the ball rests in. And Irving can again be Irving. We think.

Davis himself is playing for one of those Wyc-buster deals, and he’ll be the Kryptonite to Giannis’ Superman act in Milwaukee.

Other than Marcus Smart, the glue, and Gordon Hayward, because he has to be here, the remaining pieces won’t matter.

To make a deal for Davis, you need to pay the Pelicans, who can sell a young, new “Big 3” to their fans with Tatum and Brown, the enigma twins, joining top pick Zion Williamson.

Only Danny has the ammo to call his shot with New Orleans. But will he pull the trigger? Does he have the intestinal fortitude to try and re-package Kyrie to an infuriated Celtics’ fandom?

That will take huge guts, folks. And because of that fact, there is Option 2.

Is Brown really good? Is Tatum? Both showed flashes in the 2018 playoff run, only to pout their way through this past year because Kyrie was a meanie, and dad, I mean Brad, wouldn’t do thing one about it.

Trim Kyrie and allow the kids to again be nurtured. In a year, Al Horford goes bye-bye, and only the worst contract in the game (Hayward) stands in the way of the Celtics landing a third, sizzling piece.

You sacrifice a season, and hey maybe in the process, Hayward finds the game his wife is always Tweeting about yet we’ve never seen in Boston.

At least in that case, there is no wondering what might be with Brown and Tatum, a pair of top four picks. They can either play or they can’t.

Again, these words are tough to type. The hunch here is that Danny goes with the veterans and says bye-bye to Brown and Tatum.

There is simply more to lose in Option 2, not financially but in regards to Ainge’s reputation.

Brown and Tatum are his guys. He expended the draft capital on them. He pulled the trigger. They fail? Ainge fails.

With Kyrie, and to the lesser extent Davis, Danny always can fall back on the, “Yeah, they’re jerks. That’s not my fault,” argument.

Amazing, though, this franchise hangs in the balance, and the coach is the guy who could get caught in the crossfire.

As painful as 2019 was for fans to endure, it’s greatest victim was Stevens’ reputation. Once thought of as a coaching genius, the rising star of stars, whispers about his lack of control have crept in. He could be gone by January, and in the end it will be Ainge’s decision in the coming two months that could actually cast Stevens’ fate.


Yes, I’m sure it was lost in the frenzy of Brooks Koepka’s dramatic PGA Championship win this weekend (#sarcasm). But New Hampshire golfers are reminded that entries for the slew of upcoming NHGA State Amateur Championship are approaching fast.

In fact, the deadline for the first qualifier was Tuesday.

Players with a 12.0 index are better, who would like a shot in the field that will tangle with Portsmouth Country Club in July, should get on line with the New Hampshire Golf Association and find a qualifier that suits your game.

You have all been warned. Don’t miss out on your chance to play in a great event.


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