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Yet he is a 7-footer, and 7-footers usually have considerably more shelf life than guards and small forwards who are much more dependent on their speed and quickness.

Ainge had a sense of urgency because of the threat on his job security and the mandate to surround Pierce with players capable of providing immediate dividends.

By landing Garnett, the Celtics are finished with their countless rebuilding efforts and prepared to pay the luxury tax, if only to have a long-shot opportunity to return to their banner-raising glory of yesteryear.

That is the boom-or-bust thinking, ever risky because of the age of the threesome and the need of coach Doc Rivers to give them big minutes because of an otherwise threadbare roster.

If one of the Big Three succumbs to injury for an extended period, the plan could go the way of the Wizards last season.

A team could go from having the best record in the conference before the All-Star break to being an afterthought going into the playoffs.

The egalitarian nature of the conference undoubtedly contributed to Ainge’s motivation to make the deal.

The deal would not have been justifiable in the Western Conference. The Celtics would be no lock to garner a playoff berth there and saddled with bloated contracts.

Yet in the East, the Celtics can count themselves as being back.

How it all shakes out depends on Ainge’s follow-up moves, the durability of Pierce, Allen and Garnett and an 82-game season that taxes even the strongest.