Thank you Danny Ainge

JimM

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Jul 8, 2000
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It's been a long time since I posted, but I think this thread is a bit overdue.

Thank you for over a decade of competitive likeable teams (with a few exceptions). Thank you for one championship, two finals appearances, and a run of EC finals.

Thank you for bringing in Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen to get Paul Pierce a well deserved ring.

Thank you for JT and JB (probably my favorite player since Bird).

Enjoy your retirement.
 

Ale Xander

killed off Vin Scully
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
42,527
Thank you for Banners 15, 16 and 17, Danny.

Your 1986 Fleer PSA 8 is still one of my favorite cards I have.

Thanks for 2 decades of Celtics teams worth watching

Thanks for introducing me to Chipotle

Thanks for making me think more about my health

Thanks for being so direct and a great interview
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Mar 26, 2005
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The one attribute that really defined DA IMO is that he cared. He cared about winning; he cared about the Celtics; but most of all, he cared about people - the players, the employees, and the community.

He was a really good GM. Maybe he wasn't Jerry West (who is?) but he brought a title to BOS and should have brought additional ones if not for bad luck. The Cs could have done a lot worse than having Danny run the team for all of these years.

I hope he can learn to enjoy his retirement and take care of his health.

If anyone is interested in learning more about Danny, I'll post this podcast again (and for the last time): View From The Rafters: Behind the Scenes with the Boston Celtics | Podcast on Spotify
 

jose melendez

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Thanks for signing an autograph for me at the Belmont Mormon Church in 86 or so.

Thanks for not continuing to do things like trading Antoine for Raef LaFrentz.

Thanks most of all for turning my despair as we lost the Oden-Durant sweepstakes to joy with Ray Allen and KG.
 

bankshot1

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Feb 12, 2003
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Thanks Danny I thought you were a pretty good GM, who was as tenacious on working deals as you were on the court. IMO you generally put the Celts in good positions, and if not for some bad bounces....

Enjoy your retirement
 

moondog80

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Sep 20, 2005
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Thanks for not continuing to do things like trading Antoine for Raef LaFrentz.
This turned out to to be a pretty good deal. They got a 1st round pick that turned into Delonte West, Jiri Welsch (who, in perhaps Ainge's most magical deal, turned into a first round pick that was used on Rajon Rondo), and Antoine was so impactful in Dallas that they traded him to Atlanta 9 months later, who then shipped him back to Boston 6 months after that. He traded him right before everyone realized he wasn't good.
 
Sep 1, 2019
160
I think we will appreciate and miss him more in hindsight. The league has changed in ways that don't necessarily work in the favor of this franchise, and I think he did about the best that could be expected, better than most could have done.

We'll see in a few years how the Stevens-Ainge comparison looks.
 

jmcc5400

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As I said to some friends, in a city with a crummy climate and, deserved or not, a lousy reputation for race relations, I will happily take one banner, two finals trips, and six ECF every 18 years. It's not perfect, but it's not the Knicks, Pistons, Bulls or 76ers either.
 

Garshaparra

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Feb 27, 2008
238
McCarver's Mushy Mouth
The dirt-dog as a player became a dirt-dog as a GM - always seeking, always tweaking. Despite the hemming and hawing in recent years about not making one more big trade, it's impossible to get em all done, especially after fleeces like:

June 26, 2003: Selected Troy Bell (1st round, 16th pick), Dahntay Jones (1st round, 20th pick)
June 26, 2003: Traded Troy Bell and Dahntay Jones to the Memphis Grizzlies for Marcus Banks and Kendrick Perkins.


Mid-round picks are so often just roster fodder, role players. Turning Bell and Jones into Perk, whose hard edge changed the temperament of the whole team, was a really brilliant move.

June 24, 2004: Selected Al Jefferson (1st round, 15th pick), Delonte West (1st round, 24th pick), Tony Allen (1st round, 25th pick)

One year later, with a similar smorgasbord, Danny picked up 3 overachievers, including Big Al, whose performances far outweighed his pay grade, setting the stage for Danny's best trade of all.

July 31, 2007: Traded Ryan Gomes, Gerald Green, Al Jefferson, Theo Ratliff, Sebastian Telfair, a 2009 1st round draft pick (Wayne Ellington was later selected) and a 2009 1st round draft pick (Jonny Flynn was later selected) to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kevin Garnett.

Bonkers. Just bonkers. Minnesota figured they had to be getting the best of this, with money (Ratliff/Telfair), picks and the up-and-coming, cheap, big star. It only won the Celts a title.
 

Ale Xander

killed off Vin Scully
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Oct 31, 2013
42,527
As I said to some friends, in a city with a crummy climate and, deserved or not, a lousy reputation for race relations, I will happily take one banner, two finals trips, and six ECF every 18 years. It's not perfect, but it's not the Knicks, Pistons, Bulls or 76ers either.
Switch Bullets/Wizards in for Pistons as they have 3 titles in less than last 36 years.

I'd probably trade Celtics for Pistons last 32 years. Although worse aesthetics

Different story of course when extend to 35 37 or 40 years

And Bulls?
'
 

Garshaparra

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Feb 27, 2008
238
McCarver's Mushy Mouth
Don't forget Perk's torn ACL in the 2010 NBA Finals.
100%. Watching helplessly as 'Sheed, Big Baby and KG got repeatedly run over by Gasol and Kobe, allowing the latter to shoot 25% and still score 23 points thanks to 15 FTs (11 made)...it hurt a lot. By no means was this Danny's fault, but it was what it was.
 

128

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100%. Watching helplessly as 'Sheed, Big Baby and KG got repeatedly run over by Gasol and Kobe, allowing the latter to shoot 25% and still score 23 points thanks to 15 FTs (11 made)...it hurt a lot. By no means was this Danny's fault, but it was what it was.
My memory is far from perfect, and I'm too lazy to look it up, but I'm pretty sure the Lakers grabbed about 300 offensive rebounds in the fourth quarter.
 
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bankshot1

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where I was last at

bankshot1

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My memory is far from perfect, and I'm too lazy to look it up, but I'm pretty sure the Lakers grabbed about 300 offensive rebounds in the fourth quarter.
Fuck that game. The refs went from let 'em play for 3 qtrs to giving Kobe a sweet-heart lease on the FT line in the 4th qtr.
 

Jimbodandy

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Thanks Danny for providing stability to the Celtics front office and building a couple of teams that should have resulted in rings plural and did result in one anyway. Thanks for bringing in KG and Doc. Thanks for drafting Brown and Tatum, when those were easy things to fuck up. Thanks for bringing in Brad. And thanks for the shit you did as a player too btw.

Most importantly, thanks for giving a shit. We honestly hadn't had a combination of desire and competence since Red lost his fastball in the late 80s. We had desire with Pitino but not competence, and the other regimes had neither. So thanks for that.
 

Euclis20

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66 trades in 18 years. I was so sure the Memphis and Sacto trades would be lottery picks.
https://www.celticsblog.com/22465698/danny-ainges-unmatched-trade-math-boston-celtics

A few more he wanted to make that were shot down would make for an interesting book. Also all the Kyrie stories he managed not to leak yet. Bon voyage #44.
Indeed, although Sacto was a lottery pick (the last one, but still). That was definitely bad luck that the Kings had their best season in the last 15 years the one time we had their pick.
 

reggiecleveland

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Why not include the play that is arguably the play that served as an intro to Danny. to most of the nation

Ironically he broke the hearts of Leprechaun lovers with this about 40 years ago



View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7B7HA-1hu4
I was at a basketball camp for top Western Canadian prospects in 1981. After our workout we watched an 8mm of the 81 All American team. The black kids booed Ainge mercilessly. I was one of the few whtle kids at the camp and at the time liked Dr J, David Thompson, all the dunkers. The black kids called me "Bird" or "Ainge" out of playful respect, or a a challenge when we scrimmaged. On Sunday before the last workout we all crowded into watch this cable TV thing and the 1981 Eastern Conference finals, or when Larry officially took the mantle from Dr J. It was interesting the game began with pretty serious racist divisions the black kids saying things like "Whit e boy can't play!" whenever Bird, Robey, McHale touched the ball, not so subtly suggesting the white guys in the room could not play. Some white kids began running down the Celtics, Larry to court favor. Slowly Bird did stuff that had all the kids cheering and gasping. and the coaches lead us to appreciate guys that could play. Even before he hit the bankshot to win it, everyone could agree Bird was bad man. The coaches took a moment, and told us we were put on teams, and we should all wish for our teammates to be good players, like Larry Bird and they didn't want to hear "black guy" or "white guy comment" anymore. It was corny, but it was real.
Then one of the black kids shouted, "But, fuck Danny Ainge right?" and we all rolled on the floor laughing.
 

TripleOT

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Fuck that game. The refs went from let 'em play for 3 qtrs to giving Kobe a sweet-heart lease on the FT line in the 4th qtr.
The Lakers can’t get more than 20 points in any of the first three quarters of Game 7 in 2010, but get 21 FTs in the fourth quarter, and shoot 20 more FTs than the Celtics overall. Still ridiculous, 11 years later.
 

Vegas Sox Fan

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July 31, 2007: Traded Ryan Gomes, Gerald Green, Al Jefferson, Theo Ratliff, Sebastian Telfair, a 2009 1st round draft pick (Wayne Ellington was later selected) and a 2009 1st round draft pick (Jonny Flynn was later selected) to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kevin Garnett.

Bonkers. Just bonkers. Minnesota figured they had to be getting the best of this, with money (Ratliff/Telfair), picks and the up-and-coming, cheap, big star. It only won the Celts a title.
Boy that trade would look a lot different with Steph Curry as the Jonny Flynn pick.
 

HomeRunBaker

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Jan 15, 2004
22,052
Thank you Danny for pissing me off soooooo much on draft night in the early 2000’s that it caused me to email Wyc to give him a piece of my mind. This email resulted in an almost immediate nasty response from Wyc for which he graciously apologized for the next morning along with 4 Club seats to the Garden to bring my Dad, Uncle, and Cousin along with an incredible pre-game spread.

Aside from that.....thank you for bringing us KG and another banner. Without some bad injury luck it would have been at least two banners. Appreciated you as a player and overall you did a great job as our GM. Unfortunately all good things must come to an end and after the past couple of seasons it was time to part ways. You were a GREAT Celtic!

Mamba Out,
HRB
 

JCizzle

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Dec 11, 2006
14,635
Thank you Danny for pissing me off soooooo much on draft night in the early 2000’s that it caused me to email Wyc to give him a piece of my mind. This email resulted in an almost immediate nasty response from Wyc for which he graciously apologized for the next morning along with 4 Club seats to the Garden to bring my Dad, Uncle, and Cousin along with an incredible pre-game spread.

Aside from that.....thank you for bringing us KG and another banner. Without some bad injury luck it would have been at least two banners. Appreciated you as a player and overall you did a great job as our GM. Unfortunately all good things must come to an end and after the past couple of seasons it was time to part ways. You were a GREAT Celtic!

Mamba Out,
HRB
Holy shit, that's an awesome story! Kudos to Wyc.
 

Tony C

Dope
Dope
Apr 13, 2000
13,055
Thank you Danny for pissing me off soooooo much on draft night in the early 2000’s that it caused me to email Wyc to give him a piece of my mind. This email resulted in an almost immediate nasty response from Wyc for which he graciously apologized for the next morning along with 4 Club seats to the Garden to bring my Dad, Uncle, and Cousin along with an incredible pre-game spread.

Aside from that.....thank you for bringing us KG and another banner. Without some bad injury luck it would have been at least two banners. Appreciated you as a player and overall you did a great job as our GM. Unfortunately all good things must come to an end and after the past couple of seasons it was time to part ways. You were a GREAT Celtic!

Mamba Out,
HRB
lol...that's hilarious. :)
 

TripleOT

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Jul 4, 2007
4,799
I was pissed when you traded Antoine, thrilled when you acquired KG and got a championship after the franchise was stuck on 16 titles for 20 years, upset when you traded Perk, and then Rondo, but that was your job, and you did it the best you could.

Not picking DeAndre Jordan with the last pick of the first round after winning it all probably cost the team a couple of titles. Dumping KG and PP on the Nets hopefully will result in a couple of titles.

The structure you built in Boston hopefully will finish this second rebuild, retool around the Jays, and put banner 18 in the rafters.

Go enjoy your big family and work in getting healthier. We don’t need another Celtic great dying on us. I’ll be there when number 44 goes up in the rafters, and it won’t be for TL in 20 years.
 

Ale Xander

killed off Vin Scully
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
42,527
Thank you Danny for pissing me off soooooo much on draft night in the early 2000’s that it caused me to email Wyc to give him a piece of my mind. This email resulted in an almost immediate nasty response from Wyc for which he graciously apologized for the next morning along with 4 Club seats to the Garden to bring my Dad, Uncle, and Cousin along with an incredible pre-game spread.

Aside from that.....thank you for bringing us KG and another banner. Without some bad injury luck it would have been at least two banners. Appreciated you as a player and overall you did a great job as our GM. Unfortunately all good things must come to an end and after the past couple of seasons it was time to part ways. You were a GREAT Celtic!

Mamba Out,
HRB
which draft?
 

jeremyh331

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Jun 15, 2019
3
For many years I worked for The University of Arizona Men's Basketball program.

One game, Ainge was sitting right next to me doing some scouting. We struck up a terrific conversation about all things Celtics.

It was going very, very well until I brought up Robert Swift.

Welp.
 

Sprowl

mikey lowell of the sandbox
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Jun 27, 2006
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66 trades in 18 years. I was so sure the Memphis and Sacto trades would be lottery picks.
https://www.celticsblog.com/22465698/danny-ainges-unmatched-trade-math-boston-celtics
Yes, thanks to Danny Ainge for indefatigable trade value increments for a long, long time. Thanks for turning Jim O'Brien's defensive specialists into a slightly more valuable Ricky Davis (I forget what Ricky turned into). Thanks for turning Jordan Crawford into a minor trading chip. Thanks for giving the Pistons the missing Rasheed in their championship with the payoff of Delonte West. Thanks for reeling in Izayer, and I forgive you for dumping him unceremoniously when Kyrie came on the market. Thanks for buying the draft pick that reeled in Rajon Rondo, who eventually became Jae Crowder (who, not incidentally, shows up on playoff contenders year after year).

Thanks for your good luck in getting #1, and better talent evaluation in turning Fultz into Tatum and Langford. Thanks for your good judgment in settling for Jaylen Brown at #3. Commiserations in your consecutive #14's when they might have been high lottos, but Romeo and Aaron both look like genuine assets for 2022.

But Marcus Banks - what were you thinking? He had no lift: the guy was strictly a long jumper who couldn't clear any bar.
 

HomeRunBaker

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Jan 15, 2004
22,052
which draft?
Either 2004 or 2005. It may have had something to do with Robert Swift as I loved this kid as a prospect and will go to my basketball gave believing he would have been a stud had he not become a steroid and heroin junkie. He went from a raw HS kid to a legit player at age 20 until his knee injury and all other else. Had legit skills, quickness and footwork for a 7-1 kid.
 

Eddie Jurak

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John Karalis has a nice review of Ainge's tenure at BSJ. He suggested that the rimored Justice Winslow trade that fell through was a kind of turning point.

https://www.bostonsportsjournal.com/2021/06/03/complete-look-back-at-Danny-Ainge's-run-in-Boston,-and-where-he-leaves-the-Celtics

But 2015 brought one thing that didn’t happen, and, I think, changed Ainge for the rest of his time in Boston.

Ainge wanted Justise Winslow in the 2015 draft, and he wanted him very badly. So badly that they reportedly offered up as many as six draft picks to the Charlotte Hornets, who passed in order to take Frank Kaminsky.

"Maybe we were going too hard at it," Ainge said at the time. "There was a time when I thought, ‘Woah, this is getting a little out of control.’ We’re putting a lot of eggs in one young player’s basket. So I’m not frustrated. In the long run, maybe it’ll be the best."

Hindsight tells us this could have been the ultimate disaster for Ainge. Not only has Winslow fizzled, mostly due to health issues, the picks Ainge gave up would have left the chest empty when it came time to restock.

Personally, I think Ainge got scared straight that night. The man whose perception is now about hoarding draft picks was very willing to give them up before that deal. Since that trade fell apart, Ainge has made mostly middling deals that cleared cap space or moved draft picks around. There are two notable exceptions. I think getting drawn into a deal that nearly bankrupted him of picks led to the years of him setting a value for those picks and not straying from them.

This is where Ainge moves to big free agent signings and deals that don’t happen.
But, yes, thank you Danny for a great run. A run that should have produced more banners than it did but for rotten luck.
 

jose melendez

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The dirt-dog as a player became a dirt-dog as a GM - always seeking, always tweaking. Despite the hemming and hawing in recent years about not making one more big trade, it's impossible to get em all done, especially after fleeces like:

June 26, 2003: Selected Troy Bell (1st round, 16th pick), Dahntay Jones (1st round, 20th pick)
June 26, 2003: Traded Troy Bell and Dahntay Jones to the Memphis Grizzlies for Marcus Banks and Kendrick Perkins.


Mid-round picks are so often just roster fodder, role players. Turning Bell and Jones into Perk, whose hard edge changed the temperament of the whole team, was a really brilliant move.

June 24, 2004: Selected Al Jefferson (1st round, 15th pick), Delonte West (1st round, 24th pick), Tony Allen (1st round, 25th pick)

One year later, with a similar smorgasbord, Danny picked up 3 overachievers, including Big Al, whose performances far outweighed his pay grade, setting the stage for Danny's best trade of all.

July 31, 2007: Traded Ryan Gomes, Gerald Green, Al Jefferson, Theo Ratliff, Sebastian Telfair, a 2009 1st round draft pick (Wayne Ellington was later selected) and a 2009 1st round draft pick (Jonny Flynn was later selected) to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kevin Garnett.

Bonkers. Just bonkers. Minnesota figured they had to be getting the best of this, with money (Ratliff/Telfair), picks and the up-and-coming, cheap, big star. It only won the Celts a title.
You know, if Minnesota selects Steph Curry with that pick in stead of Johnny Flynn, no one views that trade as a rip off.

Edit: I see this was already said.
 
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lars10

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Jul 31, 2007
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My memory is far from perfect, and I'm too lazy to look it up, but I'm pretty sure the Lakers grabbed about 300 offensive rebounds in the fourth quarter.
They were still down by 10 with a few minutes to go and went on to have approximately 11 free throws in those few minutes it felt like.
 

Van Everyman

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Apr 30, 2009
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John Karalis has a nice review of Ainge's tenure at BSJ. He suggested that the rimored Justice Winslow trade that fell through was a kind of turning point.

https://www.bostonsportsjournal.com/2021/06/03/complete-look-back-at-Danny-Ainge's-run-in-Boston,-and-where-he-leaves-the-Celtics



But, yes, thank you Danny for a great run. A run that should have produced more banners than it did but for rotten luck.
Thanks for sharing that piece. Super fun trip down Danny Ainge Memory Lane.

I’m a big Danny fan BTW.
 

jacklamabe65

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It's 1986, the Boston Celtics are Kings of the World, I am living and teaching in West Newton, Massachusetts, and I am walking on Albemarle Street heading back to school. Suddenly, a gent in a Corvette passes me, stops quickly, and then backs up.

The passenger window opens up, and I quickly see that it's Danny Ainge of the Boston Celtics!

"So sorry to bother you, but I am making a basketball commercial at Fessenden, and I don't really know where it is," he exclaims.

"I teach there, Danny. I'll show you if you give me a ride there."

"Great! Get in!" He stuck out his hand and then introduced himself.

I then directed Danny to the gym where Robert Parrish and Larry Bird were waiting for him. I shook hands with all three.

Danny thanked me profusely and then went into the gym. During the drive to Fessy, we talked about his days with the Blue Jays after I told him that I saw him play third base at Fenway one night game a few years previously when he played pro baseball.

For a celebrated professional athlete, he was both humble and genuine. In retrospect, that was a wicked awesome moment and one that I've never forgotten.
 
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Van Everyman

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Apr 30, 2009
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For those of you looking for a new home, Ainge has put his up for sale.

https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/M3543866599
It’s Brad’s team now.

It's 1986, the C's are Kings of the World, I am living and teaching in West Newton, and I am taking a walk on Albemarle Street heading back to where I was teaching when a man in a Corvette passes me, stops, and then backs up. The passenger window opens up, and it's Danny Ainge. "So sorry to bother you, but I am making a basketball commercial at Fessenden, and I don't really know where it is."

"I teach there, Danny. I'll show you if you want to give me a ride there."

"Great! Get in!"

I then directed Danny to the gym where Robert Parrish and Larry Bird were waiting for him. I shook hands with all three, Danny thanked me profusely and then went into the gym. On our way to Fessenden, we talked about his days with the Blue Jays after I told him that I saw him play third base at Fenway one night game.

For a celebrated professional athlete, he was both humble and genuine. That was a cool moment.
That’s a great story, Jack. Thanks for sharing.
 

Van Everyman

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It’s taken me a little time to process this decision. For my part, I’m going to miss Ainge. I love the “Bleed Green”-types as KG would say. Danny was the kind of guy who I never doubted would be working every angle all the time to improve this team.

We make fun of the doomed Justice Winslow bromance but the amount of churn, hours and scenarios Danny spent on that because, I suppose, he just *knew* he would work out for the Celtics is a quality you want in an executive. He was insane in a lot of ways – always some version the guy who fouvjt Tree Rollins. But also insanely driven – re-reading the threads from the off-season Kyrie left and he swung the deal for Kemba and the discussion around him facilitating deals for other teams (Sheed, Lebron IIRC) is a reminder that—despite some griping about last year—he never really went into a season taking things for granted. With Danny, improving the Celtics to get them another ring was a life commitment.

I’m excited about Brad. But I’ll miss Danny, Red’s last big move. Thanks for a really fun few decades.

Edit: Fought not bit
 
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