There you go again?
The Celtics and Clippers aren’t talking again but, barring coaching hires or announcements Doc Rivers is returning, the teams will re-engage before the June 27 draft, a source told SportsCity.com.
“No big deal is done before one or both teams walk away at least once,” said the source.
The Clippers broke off talks Tuesday, within one No. 1 pick, $3 million and taking one $5 million-a-year veteran off the Celtics’ hands away from deals that would have freed Rivers to sign with them and acquired Kevin Garnett for DeAndre Jordan.
The Celtics wanted two No. 1s, the Clippers wanted to give up one.
The Celtics wanted the Clippers to pay Jordan’s $3 million trade kicker. The Clippers, well, you guessed it.
The Celtics wanted the Clippers to take Courtney Lee or Jason Terry. The Clippers preferred neither.
And that’s all there was.
Both teams are now getting on with their lives or acting as if they are.
Trying to maintain the notion that the Celtics aren’t past a point of no return, Boston GM Danny Ainge, who told Rivers he wants him back, is to meet with Doc today in Boston.
Adamant in their position that they were being held up for Rivers, with excellent coaching candidates of their own, and Garnett, who’s 13 years older than Jordan, the Clippers resumed the process of selection among Lionel Hollins, Byron Scott and Brian Shaw.
If the Clippers overstated their indifference — to say the least, their front office was electric with excitement during the talks — the source says the Celtics remain the team that wants this and will re-engage next week if there’s still a deal to be made.
A Clipper decision to hire Hollins, Scott or Shaw would leave nothing to talk to the Celtics about since Doc, not KG, was the prize.
A decision by Rivers to return to the Celtics would mean the same thing.
However, if neither happens in the coming days, stay tuned.
The Clippers’ deal for Chris Paul came a day after talks with the Hornets broke off.
The Knicks’ 2011 deal for Carmelo Anthony came after months of talks between the Knicks and Nuggets that broke off regularly.
Time will tell in this case, and not that many days of it.