Pitino: If Dino Doesn't Play in Philly, He Certainly Won't Play in Boston

June 27, 1997

No matter what the outcome of the disputed Dino Radja trade, it was abundantly clear last night that the veteran will not again wear a Celtic uniform.

The Celtics officially contested Philadelphia's voiding of the trade (Radja for Clarence Weatherspoon and Michael Cage) based on a failed physical Tuesday.

And Rick Pitino said that if the league finds that Radja is indeed injured, "that would mean he's not fit to play for the Boston Celtics."

The NBA last night confirmed that the Celtics had challenged Philadelphia's finding that Radja could not pass his physical.

According to the league spokesperson, commissioner David Stern will rule on the matter. Sixers coach Larry Brown said an arbitration hearing is scheduled for tomorrow.

Stern has already said that until the matter is decided, none of the three players involved in the deal can be traded.

In light of that, the Sixers' draft deal with New Jersey last night is on hold. The rest of that trade has Utah's Keith Van Horn (taken with the second overall pick), Don MacLean and Lucious Harris going to the Nets for draft picks Tim Thomas (No. 7) and Anthony Parker (No. 21), as well as Jim Jackson and former Celtic Eric Montross.

There was continued talk of Philly sending Weatherspoon to New Jersey for Jayson Williams, as reported in yesterday's Herald, but that deal was on hold because of the Celtic challenge.

Pitino was having trouble understanding what had changed with Radja.

"When he left us two weeks ago, he was healthy," Pitino said. "He was playing tennis, playing one-on-one basketball. He looked fine to us. I just wish we had known he was in pain. He said he was fine."

Celtic officials have some question whether Stern will restore the deal and give them Weatherspoon and Cage. If Radja again becomes Boston property, it is likely the club will try to work out a settlement of the situation.

Radja would be allowed to try to work out a deal for his services in Europe. If he can get a reasonable contract there, he would be asked to re-do his contract with the Celtics and give up the guarantees ($ 5.3 million for each of the next three seasons).

No comments:

Follow by Email