Ever since I can remember, I’ve always been a Celtics fan. Although he’s from Buffalo, my father set me up beautifully for championships within the first quarter of my life – he chose the Celtics and the Red Sox as his basketball and baseball teams over the bumbling Knicks and those fuckdicks in pinstripes. At 10 years old, I watched my favorite player, Kevin Garnett, triumphantly scream “anything is possible” after winning his long deserved first championship ring with the Boston Celtics. I was at the infamous Rondo spinning behind-the-back pass to Ray Allen in the corner. I was 6 rows back from courtside when Jeff Green dunked Derrick Favors into Middle Earth for a 15 win Celtics squad. I even sat through all those miserable Paul Pierce vs Stephon Marbury games, when the final score would total less than 140. This team has been my lifeblood, something I could always count on and look forward to for my 22 years of life.
I say all of this with a heavy heart, as today I have decided to part ways with the Boston Celtics organization as a fan.
This decision is not spur of the moment, as I just cannot take any more of Danny Ainge. The man gets too much credit for trading with the only general manager in the NBA that was worse than him at his job. Those Brooklyn picks gifted us Jayson Tatum. That’s it. (Jaylen Brown was selected with the Celtics’ own pick in the 2016 draft.) Time and time again, Ainge has failed to pull the trigger on deals that would finally put the Celtics over the hump and back into championship contention once again. It started 2 summers ago, where he failed to exchange some of his plethora of young talent for Kawhi Leonard, who would eventually carry the Toronto Raptors to their first NBA title and take home Finals MVP. The summer after, he failed to use THAT SAME TALENT to acquire Anthony Davis, who will go down as one of the best to ever play the game. This week, he failed to pull the trigger on a sign and trade deal that would send Gordon Hayward to Indiana in exchange for Myles Turner – a center with a sweet stroke from beyond the arc and a tenacity unlike many others on defense. Turner would have been exactly what this Celtics roster needed to finally break their Conference Finals plateau and play for the Larry O’Brien Trophy once again. Ainge got greedy, asked Indiana for too much, and Hayward left for Charlotte without a handshake in return. These are not moves that winning franchises make, which has led me to believe that the Boston Celtics will never win another NBA Championship while Danny Ainge occupies the General Manager seat. Under Ainge, I feel like the Celtics are content with coming in second or third in the conference, and I am not content with being content.
The past few summers, I have watched literally every other team in the association make moves to try to improve their roster every offseason. In these summers, Danny Ainge has done nothing to fill the holes on the Celtics roster, and even brought in Enes “The Matador” Kanter, who might just be the worst basketball player in the Milky Way. It’s this lack of effort or even attempt at effort, that brings me to this decision today.
So I would like to say thank you Boston. Thank you for the highs. Getting to watch Marcus Smart every night has been an absolute treat. Thank you for the lows. As heartbreaking as the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals were, I got to watch the best player to ever play dominate in a way we’ve never seen before. Thank you for all the memories. Thank you for spurring my love for basketball. But most of all, thank you for giving me 2 and a half hours every other night where I could tune out the world and tune in to Tommy Hienshon (rest in paradise) and Mike Gorman discuss what the boys in kelly green and white would need to do to pull out another W. You will always have a special place in my heart.
A Former Lifelong Celtics Fan