In 2011, Danny Ainge traded Kendrick Perkins to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for Jeff Green, a young forward that Ainge believed would be a key piece to bridging the gap from the Big Three era to the future.
It seemed that everything went wrong after that as key pieces in the Perkins deal weren't hugely successful, Rondo fell into a slump and team physicians found that Jeff Green had a heart problem that would require surgery to fix the following year.
However, Jeff is apparently back to full health and the unrestricted free agent has a good chance of finding himself back in Boston to become the player that both he, and the Celtics, believe he has the potential to become.
Green's agent David Falk has made it clear that he believes Jeff is one of the most desirable free agents on the market, and that many teams will be calling on July 1 to bid for his services. However, after Boston withdrew their qualifying offer last season, Green remained extremely close with the team and his teammates.
He was often spotted at home games in the TD Garden and found time to get together with his former team, all while being supported by the organization through his surgery and entire rehabilitation process.
Now that Kevin Garnett has returned to Boston, the Celtics will be turning their attention to bringing Green back to the team. The relationship he has with Boston has led many fans to hope that he will come to Boston at a discount to allow us to sign other free agents to be the supporting cast. Green's agent recently came out with a few comments that should give the Celtics a lot of confidence in their ability to retain the forward's talents.
David Falk revealed in an interview that he felt Boston was a great environment for Green and that the great relationship he has with the Celtics' coaches, players and executives will give them an upper hand in re-signing Green.
Although the Celtics will have to make a serious offer to Jeff Green, it appears that he will favor them in free agency and may be willing to accept any contract that is within a range he finds acceptable.
Jeff Green returning to the Celtics would provide the team with a promising forward for the future that could line up next to Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley, creating one of the more dynamic young trios in the game.
Green should be able to return to his more efficient position as a small forward, where he was absolutely great defensively keeping opposing small forwards to a 7.9 Player Efficiency Rating. The young trio will keep the tradition of defensive intensity alive on the Celtics for years to come, and Green could very well find himself in a starting position in the very near future.
If Jeff Green is truly able to return to the same form he was in as he left the game in 2011, he would be the perfect fit for what the Celtics currently need off the bench.
He can use his time in Boston to continue to improve offensively, and soon he can take to the starting lineup along side Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley. Free agency has begun and hopefully the Celtics will not have to wait long to bring Jeff Green back to Boston to return to the teammates he so quickly had to leave.