Kevin Garnett Responds to Trade Rumors

Josh BenjaminCorrespondent IFebruary 5, 2013

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 25:  Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics reacts after fouling out in the third overtime against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on January 25, 2013 in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Already the subject of a potential trade involving the Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics big man Kevin Garnett has finally addressed the rumor. Instead of waving his no-trade clause around, however, he has taken a very mature and laid-back approach to the prospect of being dealt.

Speaking to Brian Robb of Celticshub.com, Garnett discussed his name coming up in trade rumors and how he was dealing with it:

Danny (Ainge) made it very obvious since day one when he brought me and Ray (Allen) here to be aligned with Paul (Pierce) that he was going to do whatever was best for the organization. He’s made that apparent so I’ve understood that. I bleed green, I die green, that’s what it is, but it's a business though, and when it crossed the paths, I’ll deal with it. Trades are a part of this league. Every year you are going to hear certain things. If I were ya’ll I wouldn’t read much into it.

It's great that Garnett is handling the rumors maturely, but it doesn't take away from the fact that team GM Danny Ainge is at a crossroads right now.

He signed the veteran big man to a three-year, $34 million deal over the summer, in spite of the fact that Garnett is 36 years old, and now Ainge has to figure out if he can justify paying that much money to an aging star.

Thus, the question presents itself: Do the Celtics hold on to Garnett and assess their situation at the end of the season, or do they deal him now?

Keep in mind that Garnett does indeed have a full no-trade clause, so he would need to approve any potential trade. That makes trade negotiations tough from the get-go.

More importantly, what if Garnett decides to retire at the end of the season? Boston will then lose him for nothing, whereas it can at least try to get something in return for his services via a trade.

This makes the KG saga one of the rumors to watch in the days leading up to this year's NBA trade deadline. Boston may be on a four-game winning streak, but its ceiling without dynamic point man Rajon Rondo is limited.

Ainge now has two choices. He can either explore trade options for Garnett and roll the dice on him waiving his no-trade clause, or he can ride out the rest of the season with his aging roster and hope for the best.

No matter how you look at it, it's a tough call.