|2014 NBA Playoffs Expert Picks: First Round||NBA First Round Predictions||Datsyuk’s Late Heroics Topple Bruins in Game 1||Celtics Go 1-1 in Draft Order Tiebreakers|
The aging Celtics just got a bit older, after they agreed to sign the recently released Michael Finley. The 37-year-old had a an injury-plagued final year in San Antonio, and averaged just 3.7 points this season in only 25 games.
“The opportunity to earn minutes in the rotation,” Finley’s agent Henry Thomas said. “And the chance to seek a ring and the chance to play for Doc (Rivers) and with (Kevin Garnett) and some of the other guys. All of those things made Boston attractive.”
A sprained ankle forced Finley out of action for a while, and when he returned, it was clear he was out of the Spurs rotation. He then asked Spurs coach Gregg Popovich for his release, and the coach reluctantly agreed.
Over his career with the Mavericks and Spurs, Finley has averaged 15.9 points per game and is a career 37.4% shooter from downtown.
What does this signing prove? It proves that Danny Ainge isn’t giving up on this team like Peter Chiarelli did with the Bruins by not making a significant move. At least Ainge believes this team can do some damage in the playoffs — and they can if they stay healthy and work on their team chemistry, which brings me to my second point.
How will Finley affect the team chemistry? Well, it’s clear that he probably won’t hurt it anymore. He’s a veteran, he understands his role, and he’s never really been a problem where he’s played in Dallas and San Antonio. If this team can take on punks like Stephon Marbury and Nate Robinson, they’ll roll out the welcome mat for Michael Finley.
Finley should fit in with the second unit and attempt to fill the “void” left by Eddie House. He can hit his fair share of threes, and he can also give Ray Allen some rest as well. While this move may not put the Celtics over the top, it does get them closer. It can’t hurt having an extra veteran shooter.
Unfortunately, Doc Rivers may feel pressured to include Finley in the rotation because of the signing. Finley wanted to leave the Spurs because he fell out of favor…would he pull the same act in Boston? I sure hope not.