News came out yesterday night, from the 17th Annual Tradition gala in Boston, that Kendrick Perkins had discussed a possible return to the Celtics with Danny Ainge. Perk had added that this would be his final year and that he’d want nothing more than to finish it out in Boston. Even adding he’d ride a bike from Houston to Boston if given the opportunity to get back in green.
He was eyeballing January for a possible return on a 10-day contract. Danny Ainge, when asked about the conversation this morning on Toucher and Rich on 98.5 The Sports Hub, had this to say about the situation:
While it pains me inside to see him say that they might not have a spot for Perk, he’s probably right. They currently have Horford, Baynes, Theis, and Williams as their bigs. Not to mention a tweener like Yabusele who can log minutes at both the 4 and the 5. He’s right saying that they already don’t have enough minutes to go around for their bigs. 4-5 bigs, in a league that is more wing/guard oriented, is a lot to have on your roster. While I do agree with Danny, I don’t think Perk is planning on logging many minutes. If they were to bring him in, I think the most likely scenario would be that he plays limited to no minutes and acts as a veteran presence in the locker room. He did this in Cleveland the two seasons he was on the Cavaliers (2014-15 and 2017-18). He came in, gave his all in practice, provided a locker room presence, and then sat on the bench in a suit. If anyone remembers, he made his presence felt in Game 4 of the 1st round against the Celtics in 2014-15.
Hysterical. It’s even funnier when you look at the box score to see he logged 4:03 in that game and 6:11 the entire series. This was after Kevin Love’s shoulder injury (in which it looked as though Kelly Olynyk ripped his shoulder out) and you could tell Perk wanted to set the tone. Although that Cavalier team was up 3-0 in the series and probably would have won the game/series anyways, I liked his energy. He brings a toughness to the locker room and I think later on in the season the Celtics should revisit the possibility. There has been so much talk lately about the Celtics lack of toughness and if that continues, bringing Perk in wouldn’t be a terrible idea. Whether it be in practice, on the bench, or in the locker room, if this team seems to be lacking toughness, Perk would give them an earful about it. Look at this video below, he was so active on that Cavalier bench last season and we saw it first hand watching the ECF.
This man demands respect and I think he’s earned that around the league. He also genuinely cares as you can see he’ll do whatever he can to help. He’ll mix it up with anybody and I think this is a valuable thing to have in your locker room and on the bench. I also think his presence would be good for young guys like TimeLord (Williams) and Yabu. Perk is the ultimate grizzled veteran and he could teach these two a lot by setting an example for them to follow. If Williams and Yabu had the edge Perk has, there is no doubt in my mind they would be better players. Getting a veteran like Perk in their ear could work wonders for them. Toughness is undervalued in the NBA as it’s a finesse game, but toughness still matters. For the young big-men, Perk could be the answer to what brings this grit out of them. Kyrie spoke of wanting a veteran in that locker room and Perk could be that guy. While it still is a pipe dream, if the Celtics want a veteran presence to mix the locker room up a little bit, I think Perk is a prime candidate for this role.
Photo: Ronald Martinez
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