*Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak repeatedly has said Howard will not be traded and there never have been any discussions with the Celtics about swapping him for Rondo.
*Garnett has a no-trade clause and said he's not about to waive it. “If it's up to me, I'm going to live and die green,” Garnett said.
*The Clippers reportedly are confident they could change Garnett's mind if the Celtics tell him they want the trade.
Asked about the chance of Garnett and Pierce both staying put, Celtics general manager Danny Ainge said: “I think that's by far the most likely thing. Sure.”
Then why so much smoke?
“Nothing has been talked about with Paul,” Ainge said shortly after Rondo's injury. “Nothing is close to being done. I too would like to see Paul retire as a Celtic. That would be great. We're all attached to Paul. He's been great for the city, the franchise, and he's been a true pro. Having said that, if something came up, I would talk to Paul. My job is to do what's in the best interest of our team, regardless of my personal ties or my personal feelings with the players.”
Several other playoff teams are said to be considering moves. Or then again, maybe not.
Will there be fire, or simple more smoke?