Jeff Green and Nenad Krstic were traded to the Boston Celtics for Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson. These were the pieces, but in reality this trade was OKC forgoing Green to get Perkins.Unfortunately, after the trade, the Celtics who were on top of the league and playing very well, began to slide and I believe that the trade blew a chance to compete for the championship that season. Ever since, the Celtics have been trying to replace what Perk brought to the team with little success. The closest they have come was to move KG to the center position, which paid dividends last season. But they still haven't replaced what Perk brought to the team: the toughness and grit and heart that he brought to every game.
Perkins was everything that the Thunder seemed to be missing: interior toughness, defense, rebounding, and championship experience. Perkins was also a local guy (he went to high school in Beaumont, TX) who had home town values and fit right into the Thunder identity. He worked hard, played hard, and held himself accountable while keeping others accountable as well.
Over time, this trade has borne itself out heavily in the Thunder's favor. Perkins helped launch the Thunder into a two year run which culminated in a Western Conference Finals appearance in Year 1 and a Finals appearance in Year 2. He has played through injury, adversity, and all of the scrutiny that comes with being the center on a championship contending team. As we saw in last year's playoffs, Perkins was the perfect antidote for the big men who ruled the West (Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol).
So, I'm happy for the Thunder who have indeed benefited from this trade. I've come to love the Thunder They are a fun team to root for. Lots of young players with great character. Now that Dwight Howard is on one of the Thunder's biggest rivals, Perk becomes even more important to them. But with Bynum on the Sixers, he could be very important to the Celtics too.
I started following the Thunder because of the trade and so that's a good thing. But the best trade ever for the Thunder is still the worst trade for the Celtics and I very much miss Perk on the Celtics. What he brought to the team is very hard to replace and will never show up in the box score.