Bass: 'I would love to be back here'

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Bass: 'I would love to be back here'

MIAMI While so much of the talk following Boston's 101-88 season-ending loss to the Miami Heat centered around the Big Three's demise, there's another key player for the C's who will have to make some tough decisions this summer as well.

Brandon Bass is under contract for next season, but he can opt-out of his deal and become an unrestricted free agent.

That would open him up to a slew of teams that are likely to be willing to pay him more than the 4.25 million he's set to earn during the 2012-2013 season.

Just to get a feel on his market value, put it like this.

Former Celtic Glen 'Big Baby' Davis, who was traded to Orlando in exchange for Bass, inked a four-year, 25.7 million deal with the Magic.

You would be hard-pressed to find anyone who doesn't believe Bass, at the very least, is worth the kind of money that Davis is hauling in.

The only thing Bass is sure about when it comes to next season, is that he wants to remain a Boston Celtic.

"I would love to be back here," said Bass, who had 16 points on Saturday. "For any player, this organization is the organization that you want to play for."

For most of the season, Bass was known primarily as a mid-range shooter who every now and then, could play with power going to the basket.

Both Bass and C's head coach Doc Rivers have talked about his growth throughout this season in becoming a more complete player.

Fans saw just how far Bass has come with the Celtics when he was asked to begin Game 7 guarding three-time league MVP LeBron James.

Even when Bass struggled earlier this season in grasping the Celtics defensive concepts, Rivers maintained through that time that Bass could hold his own as a one-on-one individual defender.

There's holding your own, and then there's holding your own against James.

Of course James still got his points on Saturday - 14 in the first half, 31 for the game - but the bulk of them in the first half came from the free throw line and most of the fouls committed where not by Bass.

Meanwhile, Bass did his part to match James point-for-point as he led the C's with 14 first-half points which was a big part of Boston's 53-46 halftime lead.

"They asked me to guard him," Bass said. "I was just going to go out there and give it all for my team. It didn't matter who I was guarding. I just wanted to give my best."

And if the C's have their way, Bass will get another opportunity to deliver his best next season in Boston.

"This group was like family," Bass said. "We had fights and ups and downs, but at the end of the day we all fought for each other. I'm just grateful to be a part of this group."

Thomas says NBA 2K wouldn't accept Cousins trade, NBA 2K confirms it wouldn't

Thomas says NBA 2K wouldn't accept Cousins trade, NBA 2K confirms it wouldn't

The Kings have not exactly been celebrated as geniuses since news of Sunday’s DeMarcus Cousins trade broke. 

The deal, which sent Buddy Hield, a top-three-protected 2017 first-round pick, a 2017 second-rounder, Tyreke Evans and Langston Galloway to Sacramento for Cousins and Omri Casspi, has been widely mocked for how little the Kings fetched for the All-Star center. In handing out trades for the deal, SI gave the Pelicans an A and the Kings an F.

One team that could have easily beaten New Orleans’ offer was the Celtics, who seemingly did not participate in Sunday’s trade talks. On Monday, Isaiah Thomas tweeted his thoughts on the trade: 

Just as good as Thomas’ tweet was the fact that NBA 2K confirmed that it would not allow the trade to happen. 

Blakely: Celtics made the right choice in not pursuing Cousins

Blakely: Celtics made the right choice in not pursuing Cousins

NEW ORLEANS -- There will be a significant faction of Celtics Nation who will see DeMarcus Cousins’ trade to New Orleans as a lost opportunity for the C's, who could have offered a much more enticing trade package than the one the Sacramento Kings accepted.
 
The Kings received nothing even remotely close to a king’s ransom for Cousins, acquiring him in exchange for rookie Buddy Hield, journeyman Langston Galloway and ex-Pelican Tyreke Evans (who has never been the same since his Rookie of the Year season in 2010), along with a protected first-round pick and a future second-round selection.

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While the knee-jerk reaction is to focus on why Boston decided to not pursue a trade for Cousins, more important is what the non-decision means for the moment and going forward.
 
Think about what the Celtics have done in the last three-plus seasons.
 
They went from being a lottery team to one that has the second-best record in the East. They're holding the potential No. 1 overall pick in the upcoming draft; at worst, the pick will be in the top four or five. They have three of the most team-friendly contracts (Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder) in the NBA. They have promising prospects overseas as well as in the D-League. And they're led by a coach who has improved his coaching acumen -- and the team’s win total -- every year he's been on the job.
 
And it's all enveloped by a culture with a high level of selflessness, which has created a locker-room environment that has been more about fighting for each other than fighting one another or others off the court.
 
Do you really think Cousins’ talent would have trumped the baggage he'd be bringing to the Celtics if they'd acquired him?
 
For him to have fit in with this team would have required him to make the kind of changes that, frankly, I just don’t see him being capable of making at this point.
 
On more than one occasion, “not fitting in” with the Celtics culture was given to me as the reason why a Cousins-to-Boston trade never gained any traction with the team’s brass. Or coaching staff, for that matter.
 
While there's no denying that he's arguably the best center in the NBA, Cousins is a high-risk, high-reward talent that makes sense to pursue if you're a franchise which has nothing to lose by adding him to the mix. Like, say, New Orleans.
 
The Pelicans are 11th in the Western Conference despite having Anthony Davis, who has been asked to carry the weight of a franchise that has yet to figure out the best combination of talent to surround him with and find success.
 
The addition of Cousins not only provides Davis some major help, but serves as a reminder of just how desperate the Pelicans are.
 
While there are mixed reports on whether the package of assets the Kings agreed to was the best they could have received for Cousins, there was no way they were going to get anything close to comparable talent in exchange for him.
 
And that was solely due to the risk that any team was willing to take on in order to acquire him.
 
At some point, the Celtics need to take advantage of an opportunity to go all-in for a superstar player. But this was not that time, or that player.