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On Kyrie, Cavs and Celtics

By Sam Amico

Some quick NBA thoughts:

1. There’s no evidence the season-ending knee injury to Celtics guard Rajon Rondo will mean Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving starts in the All-Star game. Rondo was voted the starter by the fans, Irving a reserve by the coaches.

2. Jrue Holiday (76ers) is another point guard, and he’s been in the league longer than Irving. The decision of who starts will be made by the East coach. Bottom line: The considerably bigger issue here is Rondo’s injury and what it means for the Celtics.

3. As soon as Rondo’s injury was announced, the Internet was abuzz with Celtics trade rumors. And gosh, isn’t that just a shocker? But the Celtics were looking to make a trade before Rondo got hurt. Now? I’m sure Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge will continue making calls (just as every GM). And yes, it seems like the Celtics are primed for a fire sale. But it won’t be easy moving Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce. Young teams don’t want them and contenders will have a hard time giving the Celtics anything worthwhile in return.

4. How about Irving’s game-winner in Toronto on Saturday? The Cavs have won four of five and eight of 17 since Dec. 22. They’re a young team that’s figuring things out with perhaps the most dynamic point guard in the game. Things aren’t all bad, eh?

5. Marreese Speights and Wayne Ellington have been excellent additions off the Cavs’ bench. It took all of 30 seconds to figure out they’d make a bigger impact than Jon Leuer, who was traded to Memphis in the deal that brought Speights and Ellington (and Josh Selby and a first-round pick) to Cleveland.

6. Rumors say the Cavs may be willing to move Speights at the trade deadline, and while they really like him, it wouldn’t be a major surprise. He can opt out of his contract at season’s end and will be looking to get paid.

7. I’d like to see the Cavs hang on to the new guys. Speights is only 25 and at least as good as anything they’ll get in the draft. But it’ll all come down to whether or not GM Chris Grant feels the team can keep Speights and still maintain financial flexibility.

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