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Celtics might be draft-day movers

By Julian Benbow
Globe Staff / June 24, 2010

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On the eve of the draft, Celtics president Danny Ainge acknowledged the team was considering trading its first-round draft pick, No. 19 overall, during an appearance on WEEI.

Ainge did not return phone calls yesterday, but told the “Big Show’’ yesterday, “We’re having discussions. We’re talking about moving up, we’re talking about moving down, we’re talking about moving out for current players on [a] roster. All of those things are being discussed right now. We’re trying to figure out the best alternative and a lot of it depends on who’s available for us at 19.’’

However, the most pressing issue is coach Doc Rivers’s future. Ainge and Rivers have talked each of the last three days. “I don’t want him, personally, to make a decision too soon,’’ Ainge said. “I think that it’s really tough on him with the loss. He sees the bright side of what the team accomplished. But I know that it’s still really hard.’’

Thibodeau in charge
The Bulls made it official, introducing Tom Thibodeau as their 18th head coach 18 days after he accepted a $6.5 million deal that’s guaranteed for two years with a club option for a third.

Thibodeau called it a “dream come true’’ after spending 20 years as an NBA assistant, the last three in Boston as Rivers’s associate head coach.

Jackson awaits tests
Phil Jackson, the 11-time NBA champion coach, said he is leaning toward retirement. After a full season of speculation, Jackson will wait for the results of another battery of medical tests before telling owner Jerry Buss of his final decision late next week.

“Some of it’s about health,’’ Jackson, 64, said. “Some of it is just the way I feel right now. I’ve had vacillating feelings about it. It’s hard not to feel like coming back when you . . . have an opportunity to coach a team that’s this good.’’

Heat, Thunder deal
Miami traded shooting guard Daequan Cook and the No. 18 selection in tonight’s draft to Oklahoma City in exchange for the No. 32 pick, helping clear cap space. Cook was due to make about $2.2 million next season . . . With trade speculation swirling around him, Chris Paul told ESPN.com that he’s open to a trade if the New Orleans Hornets aren’t committed to winning championships. “My first choice is to be in New Orleans,’’ Paul said. “I just want to make sure we’re committed to winning.’’ Majority owner George Shinn discounted the rumors. “We want to see [Paul] in a Hornets uniform for the remainder of his career.’’

Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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