Nothing of real note happened at Thursday’s NBA trade deadline. JJ Reddick moved to Milwaukee and the Rockets got Thomas Robinson for next to nothing, but other than that, there were no real headlines.
The biggest headline was who didn’t get traded. Eric Bledsoe stayed put. Josh Smith stayed put. And neither Paul Pierce nor Kevin Garnett got dealt. It’s unclear if there were many suitors for Pierce, but there was one contender that has had Garnett on their radar. That contender was the Los Angeles Clippers.
But usually that’s all talk. Usually when an aging player gets the chance to chase a ring with a contender, they change their tune on no-trade clauses. Now it can be argued whether or not the Clippers are true championship contender, but they’re a contender nonetheless. And the Clippers wanted Garnett. They wanted him so bad that Chris Paul reached out to Garnett personally to let him know that if he wanted in, Paul would “make it happen”. But according to Mark Murphy of The Boston Herald, Garnett said thanks, but no thanks.
According to several accounts, though, talk between Ainge and the Clippers continued right up until the final hours yesterday. Garnett said during All-Star weekend that he would not waive his no-trade clause, and held true to his vow despite added pressure from Clippers guard Chris Paul.
According to a league source, Paul called Garnett and said that if he was open to joining the Clippers, then Paul would make it happen. Garnett, though, declined, expressing a desire to remain a Celtic.
It’s not every day that a veteran passes on a chance to chase a title. You can question many things about Garnett, but one thing you can’t question is his loyalty.