What now for Celtics?

What now for Celtics?
December 17, 2011, 5:55 pm
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BOSTON -- Because Jeff Green failed his physical, the 9 million contract he signed with the team earlier this month is voided. However, that doesn't mean the Celtics now have 9 million to spend elsewhere.

Because the C's are well over the league salary cap of about 58 million, the only thing they can offer free agents is a veteran minimum contract.

And the market, as one NBA executive told CSNNE.com on Saturday, is "extremely thin."

With only the veteran's minimum to offer, it becomes even less likely that the C's will be able to find a player not currently on the roster, to help replace Green's contributions.

Some of the possibilities for the C's include former Celtic James Posey, Al Thornton and DeShawn Stevenson.

For now, the Celtics will try to make due with the current roster.

Because the 6-foot-8 Green could play both forward positions, a team source said the C's are likely to rely on multiple players to fill the void he leaves behind.

At the small forward position, you can expect to see more of Marquis Daniels and Sasha Pavlovic, two players who have played major minutes for quality teams in the NBA.

Daniels seeing more playing time was a given, if he stays healthy.

Pavlovic, however, is a player the C's believe will step up and make the most of this opportunity.

Only 28 years old, Pavlovic was a starter on the Cleveland Cavaliers team that advanced to the NBA Finals.

Throughout that playoff run, then-Cavs coach Mike Brown often assigned him to defend the opposing team's top perimeter scorer.

"He's bigger, stronger, and more athletic than what people think," Brown told CSNNE.com prior to becoming the Los Angeles Lakers' head coach. "You look at Sasha, you don't realize how big and athletic he is until you get up close to him. And then you watch him play. In the right system, you can utilize that length and strength to your advantage. I think he can be a nice piece coming off the bench for the Celtics."

His biggest problem then - and it is now, actually - is being consistent with his play.

A team source said there's also a very good chance that we'll see more of rookie Jajuan Johnson as well.

Like Green, Johnson is a guy who can play power forward with the kind of shooting range that extends beyond the 3-point line.

Indeed, it is that versatility from one player that the Celtics will miss more than anything else.