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The dope on Baby (and more)

Posted by Tony Massarotti, Globe Staff  May 19, 2009 06:35 PM

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Lots has been reported on the status of Glen (Big Baby) Davis, so here's the definitive truth: Davis is a restricted free agent, meaning the Celtics must extend him a qualifying offer by June 30. Once the Celtics do that -- and they will -- they will have the right to match any offer Davis receives from another team.

If the Celtics decline, they lose Davis with no compensation.

Given their current economic status, the Celtics cannot take the approach of signing Davis at all costs, especially given that Rajon Rondo is eligible for a contract extension this summer and that Ray Allen will be a free agent at the end of next year. The Celtics would like to stay below the estimated luxury tax threshold of $70 million if possible -- that is true next year as well as in 2010-11 -- which places limits on their ability to spend.

Next season, the Celtics already are projected to be over the threshold. For 2010-11 they already are approaching the projected cap number (some reports estimate it at $57.3 million for next year) with just four contracts: Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Kendrick Perkins and Rondo. Though the Celtics will have some flexibility next summer, they will need much of that money to either re-sign Ray Allen or secure his replacement.

Never one to skirt the issue, Celtics vice president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has acknowledged that this summer will present the team difficult challenges. Those will continue into next summer, but the process starts now with Davis and, to a large degree, Rondo.

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