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

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Celtics-Raptors preview: Ibaka is 'capable of changing the game'

Celtics-Raptors preview: Ibaka is 'capable of changing the game'

TORONTO – The decision to stand pat at the trade deadline for the Boston Celtics was made in part because they felt that as their roster is constructed, they can hold their own with anybody.

We’re going to find out just how true that is tonight as they face a revamped Toronto Raptors team that added a couple of notable players via trade, chief among them being Serge Ibaka from Orlando.

“That was a really good trade for them,” said Boston’s Isaiah Thomas. “Bringing in a guy like Serge Ibaka; a defender, a four-man that can switch out on guards. A guy that can space the floor, shoot the 3.  So that was a good addition. I’m excited to see how that’s gonna work other than tomorrow.”

Celtics head coach Brad Stevens was also impressed with the Ibaka trade.

“That’s an improvement; there’s no question about it,” Stevens said. “Now you can play a number of different ways. He’s a really good player; he’s very agile. He’s a very good shooter. You can play him or (Patrick) Patterson at the four (power forward) the entire game now. You can play them together as a small-ball four and five (center). It gives them a lot of options on offense and defense.”

While praise for Ibaka is nothing new, you have to remember there were reasons as to why the Magic decided to give up on him so quickly, something even more hard to understand considering the assets they gave up (Victor Olidipo and a 2016 first-round pick used to select Domantas Sabonis, among others) to acquire him.

The Magic decided that they would not be in the running to re-sign Ibaka when he hits the free agent market this summer; this coming after the Thunder traded him primarily because they did not plan on giving him the near-max contract he’ll be seeking. So rather than play out this season and lose him for nothing, the Magic decided to trade him while they still could get something (Terrence Ross) in return.

While in Orlando, Ibaka averaged a career-high 15.1 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.6 blocked shots per game. For his career (all prior to this season spent in Oklahoma City), he’s averaging 11.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game.

But he never seemed to provide the kind of impactful, difference-making play that Orlando was seeking.

And while the Celtics speak highly of Ibaka, he hasn’t been much of a problem for the Celtics this season.

In two games against Boston, Ibaka has averaged 6.0 points and 4.0 rebounds.

Jae Crowder believes the struggles Ibaka has endured against the Celtics, are not a clear reflection of what he’s capable of doing as a player.

“For sure it makes them better,” said Crowder in describing the Raptors with Ibaka. “He’s a guy that can stretch the floor and rebound at a high rate. We know what he brings to the table.”

And those struggles we saw of him with the Magic?

“I think it was him more so than us,” Crowder said. “I give him credit because he wasn’t playing with the energy and passion he usually brings. I’ve been able to line up against him a quite a few times.  He didn’t have that passion like he did when he was in O-K-C (Oklahoma City). Maybe he’ll have it now. I know exactly what he’s capable of doing; he’s capable of changing the game with his play.”