When ESPN.com reported on Tuesday that the Celtics would be willing to trade point guard Rajon Rondo for the right player, it surprised anyone who had seen the sixth-year player's mastery of the team's system in recent years.
But according to numerous sources with knowledge of the situation, Boston general manager Danny Ainge is highly motivated to land an even better point guard than the one who led the Celtics to a championship in 2008 and an average of 58.5 wins in the last four seasons: New Orleans' Chris Paul.
Ainge, the sources say, has recently discussed trading Rondo in a deal that nets Paul, but the Hornets don't appear interested in a two-team deal in which Rondo -- who has four years worth approximately $46 million left on his contract -- and Paul would switch places. So Ainge has been on the prowl for a third team that could provide the sort of young pieces Hornets general manager Dell Demps would covet as part of his possible rebuilding plan. The more pressing question, of course, is whether Paul, who can become a free agent after this season, would consider signing an extension with Boston.http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/sam_amick/11/29/chris.paul.celtics/index.html