The Boston Celtics were among the losers in the Kevin Durant sweepstakes as the 2014 MVP chose the Golden State Warriors. The latest NBA rumors suggest that the Celtics will look at the trade market to find a third All-Star.
The addition of Al Horford is a big boost to Boston along with All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas. However, they need another All-Star player to become legitimate title contenders. Here are the five players the Celtics can trade for this offseason.
Jimmy Butler – SG, Chicago Bulls
NBA rumors have linked Butler and Boston since the trade deadline with the Celtics making one final offer on draft night. The Chicago Bulls just signed Rajon Rondo, a player who might not be the best partner for Butler, per CBS Sports.
The Celtics and the Bulls could revisit the trade this offseason but Chicago will likely wait until next year’s deadline to make a move. Boston could always package a deal involving a combination of rookie Jaylen Brown, Jae Crowder, Marcus Smart, Avery Bradley and a bunch of future first round picks.
DeMarcus Cousins – C, Sacramento Kings
Just like Jimmy Butler, DeMarcus Cousins have been part of NBA rumors for the past couple of months. Kings general manager Vlade Divac has insisted that they will not trade DMC this offseason. However, the Celtics can always make an offer for Cousins, who is going to be a free agent in 2018.
Russell Westbrook – PG, Oklahoma City Thunder
According to The Big Lead, Russell Westbrook will not sign a contract extension with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Durant’s departure was a huge factor and the Thunder will be smart to trade him now rather than let him leave for free like KD.
Of course, Thomas will be part of any deal involving Westbrook but trading an All-Star and a bunch of picks is risky. The Celtics could always try and sign another superstar next offseason but just like this summer, they might get snubbed.
Blake Griffin – PF, Los Angeles Clippers
The Clippers will have one more year to see if they can win with their current core of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and DeAndre Jordan. However, the addition of Durant to the Warriors is the final nail in the coffin that is the Clippers hope for a championship.
Griffin was very disappointing last season with all the injuries and punching a team staff for a silly reason. If the Celtics trade for him, he forms a good frontcourt with Al Horford. NBA rumors have suggested that the Clippers have no intention of trading Griffin this offseason but that could change at the February trade deadline.
Kevin Love – PF, Cleveland Cavaliers
If the Cavaliers did not win the championship, Love might have been in Boston already. But the Cavs managed to win the NBA title with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving taking over the final three games. Love also played a big part in Game 7 which means he won’t be traded, yet.
Photo Courtesy: Shinya Suzuki/Flickr