Chris Paul has nudged the Clippers back into negotiations with the Boston Celtics for Kevin Garnett and Doc Rivers, and now team management is apparently waiting on final approval from owner Donald Sterling to get a deal done. The Clippers are close to finalizing transactions to send DeAndre Jordan and a pair of first-round picks to the Celtics in exchange for Garnett and the rights to sign Rivers to a new five-year, $35 million contract, and at this point all Sterling has to do is approve the move, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
Team management had planned to seek Sterling's blessing on Wednesday night, but their owner was out to dinner with Indiana Pacers assistant coach Brian Shaw. The new plan is to get his authorization on Thursday, so at this point the transaction is close to completion. The Clippers have agreed to pay a $3.5 million trade kicker in Jordan's contract, Garnett is ready to waive his no-trade clause, a new mega deal with Rivers is in place, and soon-to-be free agent point guard Chris Paul will be expected to re-sign with the franchise when he becomes a free agent on July 1.
Talks broke down on Tuesday when the Clippers balked at Boston's demands, so the key to getting a deal done in the near future is to avoid any last-second tinkering or hardline negotiating by Sterling. Who knows what could happen if the owner suddenly decides that the second first-round pick is too much to give away. In the meantime, Rivers is making plans to go to L.A. and has arrangements to bring assistant coaches with him from Boston.
For more on the details on the deal and the complicated issue of seeking league approval for what is technically two separate transactions, be sure to check out Steve Perrin's breakdown on Clips Nation.