Garnett deal gives Celtics options

And so it begins.

Kevin Garnett on Saturday morning became the first of many free-agent dominoes to fall, reportedly agreeing to a three-year, $34 million deal to stay with the Celtics. Garnett, in fact, needn't wait until July 11 -- he can sign the contract today as an extension to his current deal.

Obviously, this was a huge and important move for the Celtics to retain the man who, on most nights, is still their best player. Moreover, it leaves two paths for the Celtics as they try to fill out the rest of their roster in free agency. By retaining Garnett quickly, Boston takes a gargantuan cap hold off its books and clears itself to use either cap space or the full midlevel exception to build out the roster.