Boston Decided To Keep All Of It’s Assets, Now What Is Next For Boston As They Chase The NBA Championship?
As the 3pm Eastern Time trade deadline, Celtics fans patiently followed each of their social media feeds waiting on the news of a Big Trade. Their had been rumors of Paul George of the Pacers or Jimmy Butler of the Bulls being linked to the team in Green. But as each of teams in the East got better, (Cleveland trading for Kyle Korver, Toronto landing Serge Ibaka and P.J Tucker and Washington acquiring Bojan Bodgadovic) Ainge decided his best move would be not to make one.
We had a lot of conversations. There were things we could do to improve our team but nothing that was good enough to do. – Danny Ainge on Thursday Afternoon during his media session
Boston enters the stretch run at 37-20, which puts them 3 games behind the Cleveland Cavaliers for the top spot in the East. They already have the 2nd best scorer in the NBA in MVP candidate Isaiah Thomas, 2 all-NBA type defenders in Jae Crowder and Avery Bradley (who has been out 14 of the last 15 games) and big man Al Horford in the paint. Their bench is deep with guys like Marcus Smart, Tyler Zeller and rookie Jaylen Brown. You add all of those pieces with head coach Brad Stevens and Boston matches up very well with just about anyone in the league.
Now adding some of the level of George or Butler would elevate the talent level in a big way, but at what cost? George, who is a free agent at the end of the 2018 season, has not committed to resign with any team that trades for him (Ask the Denver Nuggets who learned that on Thursday). So would it be worth it to give up 3 to 4 of those pieces to land him? A package of Smart, potentially Avery Bradley or Jaylen Brown, with Amir Johnson’s contract and one of the Brooklyn picks be worth it to land George or even Butler. Remember there are 25 games left in the regular season for Boston, so why at this point change what is working to add a new player or two a winning team?
When making trades this time of year, you have to take that into account. Adding a player who is a rotation player is already hard enough, but when you add a superstar at this point it doesn’t make much sense to “Rock The Boat”. Boston has a solid rotation and they haven’t had a chance to play in the playoffs with the group.
So before fans start with “Fire Ainge” chants just remember what you have in the future. A potential top 5 pick in the loaded NBA Draft and enough cap space to sign a top-tier Free Agent. (Hello Gordon Hayward or Blake Griffin) Now that doesn’t sound so bad at all.