What Jordan Crawford Brings to the Boston Celtics

Brett David RobertsCorrespondent IFebruary 21, 2013

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported that the Washington Wizards will be sending Jordan Crawford to the Boston Celtics. The Wizards in return will receive Leandro Barbosa, who is out for the remainder of the 2012-13 season.  The Wizards will also receive Jason Collins, whose value as a player has been minimal since entering the league over 10 years ago.

For Danny Ainge's Celtics, the real question is whether Crawford can help.  Crawford is a player who has never met a shot he didn't like, and that might not gel well on a Boston Celtics team with so much cohesiveness and unity.

His scoring ability can come in handy at times, though, as the video of Crawford putting up 31 against the Cleveland Cavs illustrates.

The thing is, Crawford is known to be an absolutely horrible defender, which won't exactly earn him the praises of a good defensive-minded coach like Doc Rivers.

Truly, it's unclear what the C's hope to gain by acquiring Crawford. They need three-point shooting and Crawford shot just 28.9 percent from behind the arc last season. And while he is better this season at 34.5 percent, that isn't exactly the kind of marksmanship the C's need.

There's a reason why Wizards GM Ernie Grunfeld wasn't keen on keeping the 24-year-old guard, and though he has a lot of promise as a player, it will take hard work on some glaring deficiencies (namely, his shot selection and man-to-man defense) to make Crawford worthy of Danny Ainge keeping in the long-term.

Maybe Doc Rivers can impart the finer points of passing to Crawford. Perhaps the defense-oriented Celtics (Kevin Garnett in particular) can drive Crawford to give an honest effort on that end of the court. But all of these "maybes" don't guarantee that he'll thrive in Beantown.

It's unclear how Crawford will even fit into the backcourt rotation. Presumably, he'll assume the role vacated by the injured Leandro Barbosa. Crawford brings similar skill to the table as Barbosa, so he's a perfect replacement for the end of the rotation.

It's doubtful that Crawford leapfrogs Courtney Lee or Jason Terry in Rivers' rotation, though; and Avery Bradley will certainly get his minutes.

That's why there's not much to get excited about the acquisition from Boston's perspective.

As Royce Webb said, an exciting dunk on LeBron James isn't going to drastically improve the C's chances of contending.  Nevertheless, the dunk is worth watching again.

Casual fans rejoice at getting a player with Crawford's athleticism—but NBA analysts realize there's more to the game of basketball than exciting dunks.

Even if Crawford brings some excitement to Beantown, Ainge will grow to regret obtaining a player whose understanding of team concepts is so poor that he couldn't even stay in the rotation on a horrible Wizards team.