According to league sources, Danny Ainge has been pretty firm in the past on his need to get a major player in return for his All-Star point guard, and while the president of basketball operations has to realize Rondo’s impending 2015 free agency may change the game a bit, he is still under no time pressure to pull the trigger.
As opposed to Kevin Love, who told Minnesota he will opt out at the end of the coming season and leave if he is not dealt beforehand, Rondo consistently said he wants to remain with the Celtics. His view may change if the club is still treading water at the end of 2014-15, and there is no question the C’s will look heavily into trading him before then.
But sources said repeatedly that choice No. 1 is to find an impact player to pair with Rondo, though that appears quite a longshot. The Timberwolves haven’t taken their bait on Love, and Ainge hasn’t been able to get involved in other major scenarios. [...] Time, however, remains on their side. The word is strong that the Celtics will look at all possible Rondo deals, and if nothing is to their liking, they would rather risk seeing him walk away as a free agent and take the salary cap benefit.