OFFSEASON

What's Green worth?

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What's Green worth?

While Jeff Green's contract with the Celtics is still officially unofficial, Danny Ainge reiterated yesterday in Vegas, that the C's and Green have agreed on a four year deal worth 36M.

It's a contract that many in the basketball world feel is absurd for a relatively-unproven, soon-to-be-26-year-old who missed all of last season after heart surgery.

And I agree.

On one hand, I understand why the Celtics made signing Green a priority. It's the same reason they traded for him in the first place: Because they desperately needed another small forward and Green was the best available and most versatile option.

He also fits in well with the changing face of this team. You can already see him running back and forth with Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley, while the out-of-breathe opposition thinks to themselves: "Holy crap. What the hell happened to the Celtics?"

That's the best case scenario. And you know that's what Danny Ainge and the Celtics are banking on. They believe that Green was put in an awful position two seasons ago. That he was never comfortable within Boston's system. They believe that his time shadowing the team last season will help the chemistry, and that a fresh start will lead Green to realize a level of potential that many deny even exists.

But anyway you cut it, 36M is a lot to gamble on potential. It's only fitting that Ainge made the announcement in Las Vegas.

Speaking of which, David Falk (Green's agent), was in Las Vegas as well. And according to this story in the Herald he had a message for all those who believe Green's unworthy of the new deal:

I had a (team personnel executive) that I met with last week who had told me that if we took a dime less under 13 million dollars a year for Jeff Green he should fire us, Falk said.

He continued: The truth is I think Jeffs market value was several million dollars more (over the course of the four years) than what he signed for . . . he accepted a deal that I think is very fair, but I dont think is as much as he could have gotten.

Hmm . . . it's up to you how much you're willing to believe the words of an agent. Especially when he's talking about one of his own clients. But who knows? With the ridiculous deals and moronic GMs that exist in this league, maybe it's possible that someone out there was actually willing to give Green 13M a year.

But here's the point: It doesn't matter now.

Regardless of whether andor why he accepted less money to play for the Celtics, Green still has to prove that he's even worth what he "settled" for. No one in Boston will have sympathy for him turning down 13 million if he plays like a guy who deserves six.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

OFFSEASON

Kevin Durant solidifying invitations for free agent meetings, including Celtics

Kevin Durant solidifying invitations for free agent meetings, including Celtics

The wheels of the Kevin Durant free agent train have been set in motion.

"Durant’s representatives at Roc Nation are working to solidify invitations" for meetings with a list of six teams, which includes the Boston Celtics, according to The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski. The other teams listed are the Warriors, Clippers, Heat, Spurs and Thunder. The Nuggets, Knicks, Lakers, Rockets, and Wizards could "could still find audiences with him," but they are considered outsiders.

Wojnarowski says the Thunder remain the frontrunners, but "the Warriors have Durant's attention."

If Durant chooses the Warriors, it could happen very quickly. Warriors restricted free agent Harrison Barnes could sign an offer sheet for a contract on July 1, which would mean the Warriors would have only have three days to match the deal. They'd likely need a decision from Durant before then, or they'd risk losing one of their valuable pieces without being able to fill his role.

Durant plans on making his decision before July 9 anyway, according to Wojnarowski, because that's when he's leaving for a publicity tour in the Far East.

The fact the Celtics are even on Durant's primary list shouldn't come as a surprise considering his actions after his game in Boston against the Celtics earlier this year. They do have tough competition though. Both the Warriors and Heat have the cap space to absorb Durant's likely max contract worth about $26.4 million, and the Spurs can easily create the space if necessary.

The Clippers are interesting though, because they'd have to deal one of their stars (Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan, or Blake Griffin) to free the cap space to sign Durant. If he does choose the Clippers, maybe Danny Ainge could help Doc Rivers swing a deal. How about something involving Blake Griffin and Jae Crowder?

But the Celtics have an edge. They're the only team listed that can sign two max contract free agents. If Durant wants to play with his buddy Al Horford, or anyone else for that matter, the Celtics can make it happen. How about a 2007 draft class reunion with Durant, Horford, and Jared Dudley? It's an odd trio, but Dudley has already expressed interest in joining the Celtics.

No matter what happens though, the Celtics are in the race. Fans might be disappointed after Thursday night, but we're just getting started, folks.

Kevin O’Connor can be followed on Twitter: @KevinOConnorNBA