COMMENTARY | There are certain players who tend to fall off a cliff as soon as their athleticism begins to vanish. It's hard to watch, but some guys just don't make the necessary adjustments to their game to stay relevant.
Gerald Wallace, unfortunately, is the perfect example. Once known as a tough, athletic, versatile forward who could fly around the court with the best of them, Wallace is a shadow of his former self. He hasn't been the same since he left the Portland Trail Blazers, as plenty of Brooklyn Nets fans can tell you. Wallace is only 31 years old, but it's old enough for someone with his style.
Let's be honest: Wallace is only on the Celtics because the Nets had to send back salary to absorb the money owed to Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry. He doesn't fit into Boston's plans of getting younger, unless Danny Ainge owns a time machine.
Plenty of people, myself included, have been under the impression that the Celtics would eventually flip Wallace to a contender in need of some depth on the wing. It only makes sense, right? Sure, Boston probably wouldn't get much back in return, but he could be a useful rotation player to a team in need of a veteran presence.
Well, it appears as if this might not happen after all. According to Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, Celtics fans shouldn't expect a Wallace deal. Citing league executives, Mannix states that Boston would need to give up at least one of the draft picks it acquired from Brooklyn simply to dump Wallace's salary.
According to HoopsHype, Wallace is owed more than $30 million over the next three seasons. Yikes. No wonder any potential trade partner would be asking for at least one draft pick to take on Wallace's salary.
It's hard to see Danny Ainge giving up a valuable first-round pick simply to get rid of Wallace. That's a steep price just to get someone to go away, and the Celtics would likely get very little in return. Still, things can always change. Injuries happen, and maybe a contender will be in desperate need of veteran wing help as the trade deadline approaches. Hey, weirder things have happened.
For now, it looks like Wallace will just have to find some way to contribute in Boston. Serving as a mentor to someone like Jeff Green could be the best use of his efforts. Imagine if someone of Green's talent had Wallace's aggression?
Mark lives in the Boston area and has been covering New England sports for various blogs over the past 4 years. He has been featured on Fox Sports Yardbarker, Fox Sports, and Sports Illustrated "Hot Clicks", and has been published on Celtics 24/7, Bleacher Report, and Sports-Kings.
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