In this edition of the Four-Point Play, I’ll look into the official signings of J.R. Giddens and Bill Walker, the reason Darius Miles is now a Celtic, and I’ll recap the Gold Medal-winning U.S. Olympic basketball team.
1. The Celtics officially signed J.R. Giddens, luring him away from a few European teams to sign a guaranteed two-year deal.
- That deal also includes two option years that could be worth up to $5 million. I like the deal for Giddens, and I’m also liking the fact that Ainge picked him at No. 30. Giddens should be a strong defender throughout his career and in a couple years be able to slide in as the sixth or seventh man (first or second off the bench).
- A note to European teams: players will only sign in Europe if they have no chance of much playing time here in the states. Unless the European squads are flashing millions, NBA players are probably not going to sign there. Stop trying to steal talent from the Celtics! (But, I will admit its a fair market, if they have the money and want the player, I don’t blame them for trying).
2. Talk about blast from the past: Darius Miles may step on the court this season for the first time since the 2005-06 season after signing a one-year deal with the Green.
- This really is a no-lose situation for the Celtics. If he’s bad in camp, they can release him and not worry about it. If he’s good, well then he will play and has the capability of being effective.
- He may be a different player after micro-fracture surgery (not many ever are the same except Amare Stoudemire) but I see him as a capable scorer in the NBA.
3. The Celtics were busy this past week with their signings, also inking 2nd round pick Bill Walker to an undisclosed deal.
- Walker is a real wild card. If he’s healthy, they say he has amazing athleticism. He’s an electrifying scorer who is known to play above the rim. If he can jump off his legs with confidence, he could be yet another good second round pick by Ainge.
- Walker could follow in the footsteps of Ryan Gomes, Glen “Big Baby” Davis (traded for him) and Leon Powe as guys that Ainge targeted in the second round who turned out to be solid role players in the NBA.
4. The Redeem Team won the long-awaited Gold Medal on Sunday to close out the Olympics as the best basketball team on Earth. It was their first Gold since the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
- The pundits and fans are giving Kobe Bryant all the credit. After all, he wasn’t on the Bronze Medal-winning squad in 2004 and was on this Gold Medal-winning team in Beijing. But, he had a lot of help.
- Gone are punks like Allen Iverson and players that don’t seem to care like Tim Duncan. Enter players that seemed focused on winning the Gold: LeBron James, Kobe, Dwight Howard, Chris Paul, Dwayne Wade. The lineup they threw out there night in and night out could seriously have given the original Dream Team a run for their money (well, maybe not).
- I will say that the talent level worldwide now is much better than it was in 1992 when Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Karl Malone and co. dominated the Olympic games. So, I tip my cap to the Redeem Team. My only question for them now is what are they going to call their team in 2012?
Tags: Celtics, Darius Miles, Four-Point Play, J.R. Giddens, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Olympics