The Boston Celtics are expected to pull a blockbuster trade before the February 23 deadline. With the current trade assets they have, the Celtics are in a position to acquire a superstar who can help them compete for the title this season.
After years of rebuilding the team, the Celtics are now considered as a strong title contender. They are currently No. 2 in the Eastern Conference just two wins behind the Cleveland Cavaliers. The rise of Isaiah Thomas proved to be a major reason behind Boston’s recent success.
However, they still need to continue improving their roster if they want to beat the Cavaliers or the Golden State Warriors. Here are the superstars the Boston Celtics could target before the trade deadline:
Jimmy Butler already expressed his intention to stay with the Chicago Bulls. But, his name continues to surface in various trade rumors. The Boston Celtics have been a suitor of Butler since the recent offseason. However, the Celtics weren’t willing to give the Bulls’ demand as they were previously asking a starter and a first-round pick.
“Today, a general manager told me he believes the Bulls would accept a ‘Godfather offer’ for Jimmy Butler. But, they want a lot (obviously),” Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype reported.
Butler will undeniably be a great fit in Boston. However, if the Bulls still stick with their asking price, a deal is unlikely to happen. According to K.C. Johnson of Chicago Tribune, the Celtics aren’t willing to give up the Nets’ 2017 first-round pick which is expected to be the No. 1 overall in the upcoming draft.
ESPN’s Zach Lowe revealed that the Boston Celtics talked intermittently with the Clippers about Blake Griffin. Since the offseason, the Celtics continue to be active on the trade market looking for a big man to pair with Al Horford. Griffin will undeniably be an incredible frontcourt partner with Horford but he’s expiring will be a major concern.
Griffin will become a free agent this summer where the Celtics could lose him for nothing. Boston should first ask permission from the Clippers to talk to him about his future. If the Blake-Griffin-to-Celtics trade proceeds, Lowe revealed that the Clippers could demand Jae Crowder, Avery Bradley/Marcus Smart, and future draft picks.
Despite the acquisition of Thaddeus Young and Jeff Teague, the Indiana Pacers aren’t in the position to dethrone the Cavaliers this season. According to ESPN, Paul George isn’t guaranteeing the Pacers that he would sign a massive contract extension this summer. George also said that he wants to play on a winning team.
George’s statement created speculations that he may leave Indiana once he becomes a free agent. Also, some people think that he would be available before Feb. 23 deadline. As Lowe notes, George is also on the Celtics’ radar. “PG-13” and the Celtics have one common goal – to win the NBA championship title this season. Unlike in Indiana, George may have the chance to play for a “winning team” once he heads to Boston.