Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Celtics Trade Deadline Thoughts

Danny Ainge, armed with enough assets to acquire almost any player available to bolster a team on the brink of legitimate contention, is ready for the NBA Trade Deadline.

While I trust Danny almost as much as I do Bill Belichick, my big fear is that ownership may push him to use one of the key assets - rights to swap first round picks this year with the Nets, the rights to the 2018 Nets first round pick, or young wing man Jaylen Brown - on a veteran such as Jimmy Butler or Paul George who would solve one hole (complimentary star scorer next to Isaiah Thomas) but not the other hole (big man who can impact the game on both ends of the floor).

Thankfully for him, I've been doing my part to help by wasting most of my vacation manipulating ESPN's NBA Trade Machine to come up with a solution that solves their short term needs while maintaining the flexibility to build a long term contender.

If anyone has Danny's contact info, please forward him the following trade proposal and then let him know he can thank me by picking up the tab for a few slices and a couple of 32oz drafts at Halftime Pizza before the March 12 game against the Bulls.

Yes, a three-way deal to solve a few issue for the Celtics.

Boston will be giving Detroit salary filler in the form of Tyler Zeller, Jonas Jerebko, and Jordan Mickey as well as promising young guard Terry Rozier and the rights to 2017 first round pick Ante Zizic, a 6-11 center currently playing in Turkey. Dallas adds in salary filler Deron Williams for the Pistons.  The Pistons big grab here is the rights to the Nets first round pick in 2018 as well as the first round pick owed to the Celtics by the Grizzlies. Detroit gets Rozier and Zizic, salary cap relief, and two promising first round draft picks.

Dallas adds Reggie Jackson from the Pistons and Jae Crowder from Boston to help with their rebuild as well as salary cap relief in the form of Amir Johnson and James Young. Boston will also send Dallas their 2019 first round pick and the 2017 second round pick they are owed from Minnesota.

Boston adds Andre Drummond and Harrison Barnes to their existing group and immediately becomes a legitimate title contender while putting together a team that can contend for several years. Barnes is not on the level of Butler or George but he's an All-Star caliber player with a championship pedigree and Drummond gives the C's a big man who can score, rebound, and protect the rim.

How's this for a rotation heading into the playoffs?

Thomas, Avery Bradley, Barnes, Al Horford, and Drummond as a starting five with Marcus Smart, Brown, Kelly Olynyk, and Gerald Green off the bench.

That is a team that can win now, contend for the next 4-5 years, and will be bolstered by whatever player they draft (or deal) with a likely Top 3 pick this June courtesy of the Nets.

Thanks for the pizza and beers Danny.

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