Kendrick Perkins thinks Doc Rivers hurt his chances at being a franchise player

Kendrick Perkins thinks Doc Rivers hurt his chances at being a franchise player

Kendrick Perkins retiring from the NBA may have been the best thing to happen to basketball in the 2018-19 season. Because now we have Kendrick Perkins the media personality (and pseudo-reporter), and he is everything you’d want from an ex-athlete in his role.

And Perk always has his old team on the mind. His love for the Celtics is why he’s denounced former teammate Kyrie Irving.

In the course of his never-ending media tour that he never had as a player, Perkins’ days with the Celtics come up frequently — the end in particular. On ESPN’s latest “Brian Windhorst and The Hoop Collective,” his trade from Boston to Oklahoma City came up again. However, where he’s spoken about the heartbreak in the past, Perkins added another layer to the story.

“I knew I was getting traded,” Perkins said. “Danny (Ainge) and I used to meet in his office all the time. And I remember he pitched a deal to me. I was just coming off a four-year, $16 million deal, and he was like ‘Perk, we love you, we don’t have the money, but would you be willing to take another deal, but you’ll make $6 million a year,’ and I was like ‘well Danny, I’m 25, I’m looking at starting centers right now and their average salary is $10 (million)-plus’ and he could respect it.

“I was hurt the team was still having success with Jermaine O’Neal and Shaq (O’Neal). Still at the top of the East. So it surprised everybody else but it didn’t surprise me. And, I was not mad at Danny because Danny could have sent me anywhere. He sent me to place that (he) knew they (were) going to pay me what I was worth. So it wasn’t a bad trade on Danny’s part because I was leaving Boston anyway that summer, so it was actually a smart move by Danny.”

Then, in the course of discussing Kawhi Leonard’s free agency tour, Perkins admits he wishes he’d been big enough of a deal to create his own frenzy during his playing days. And he thinks he could have been a franchise player — which may be his hottest take yet — but Perkins claims his old coach didn’t help his chances.

“Doc Rivers, and I love him to death, he’s like a father figure to me, but he hurt my chances of being a franchise player and I tell him that all the time,” Perkins said. “He made me into a role player at the age of 24, because I had to be.”

Perkins then quickly mentioned being a significant role player who helped a franchise win a title wasn’t the worst thing for his career.

“It kept me in the league for 15 years, so it turned out for the best,” he said.

Probably best for Perkins to focus on the fact he lasted forever in the league largely thanks to his part in the 2008 NBA Finals win — and all the money that came with it — versus what could have (but probably would not have) been.



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Source: GreenStreet Blog

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