Monday’s edition of the San Francisco Chronicle has a breakdown of each of the Golden State Warriors’ potential trade partners. Apparently, the only team that the Warriors have not been linked to is themselves.
One of the curious rumors mentioned by the Chronicle is one with the Boston Celtics—a swapping of point guards Stephen Curry for Rajon Rondo. It is reported that the Dubs declined the notion of dealing away Curry, which would be considered, in industry terminology, stupid-dumb.
Golden State had some on-court items to worry about yesterday, as they went to battle against the Toronto Raptors. As such, the team probably did not see the Celtics’ game against the New York Knicks earlier in the day. What they missed was a historic game from Rondo: 18 points, 17 rebounds and 20 assists. That stat line, and the resulting 115-111 overtime win over the Knicks, means that Boston will most certainly rescind its offer to part ways with Rondo.
But if Boston general manager Danny Ainge is still shuffling with the idea of letting go of his team’s stat-stuffing point guard, then the Warriors should provide a full-court press attack in trying to acquire him.
It’s likely that Boston’s offer is off the table, however, even though the Celtics have suggested that they want a point guard who has a better shooting stroke. Though Rondo is one of the league’s great passers and on-the-ball defenders, his outside shot is a major weakness. That is where the interest in Curry comes in.
However, Curry has demonstrated all season that he cannot remain healthy. Curry has turned his ankle seemingly countless times so far this season, which has led him to sit out 12 games as a result. Such fragility is not worth the gamble for Boston, a team that is already aging and isn’t terribly deep at the point guard position (Avery Bradley?).
But the Warriors need to reignite talks fast and push strongly for this potential deal. Despite Curry’s health concerns, he is a gifted shooter and passer and would be an asset to any playoff-bound team, as he can play both backcourt positions. Furthermore, his career 90 percent free-throw percentage is crucial in close postseason games. Conversely, Rondo shoots 62 percent from the line, and he becomes a liability down the stretch, sometimes sitting on the bench during crunch time.
In return, the Dubs would get a bona fide distributor, who has the creativity and playmaking ability to complement the scoring of Monta Ellis.
The Warriors have been quick to acknowledge that the tandem of Ellis and Curry has not worked, and swapping a scorer in Curry for a facilitator like Rondo would only improve the team’s often-stagnant offense. Moreover, Rondo’s defense is exponentially better than Curry’s, so the Dubs would improve at both ends of the floor.
If Golden State is serious about its intentions of making the playoffs this season, it would behoove them to make a deal as soon as possible. Finding a suitor for Curry is a necessity, and if Boston has not closed its door on attaining him, then the Warriors better keep ringing the doorbell.
Otherwise, they can say goodbye to the postseason this year—again.
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