Tea Boston Celtics are moseying right along through this year’s offseason after having come within just two games of claiming their franchise’s 18th championship banner this past June.
Though they may already be known as the league’s runner-ups and cemented their status as one of the best teams heading into 2022-23, Brad Stevens and co. have astonishingly managed to make this ball club even more threatening with their summer endeavors.
In fact, the front office’s efforts were so effective in making the C’s better that Bleacher Report writer Andy Bailey believe them to be one of the most improved teams of the entire offseason.
“The Boston Celtics just made the NBA Finals with Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, their two best and most important players, firmly in the pre-prime portions of their careers. This offseason, they added a starting-quality guard in Malcolm Brogdon and a high-end role player in Danilo Gallinari in exchange for one player who was consistently in the rotation (Daniel Theis).
If Brogdon can stay healthy—a big “if”—Boston will have one of the best guard rotations in the league with him, Brown, Marcus Smart, Derrick White and Payton Pritchard.
During his three seasons with the Indiana Pacers, Brogdon averaged 18.9 points and 6.3 assists while providing versatile defense. Lineups with him, Smart, Brown and Tatum will have a potentially unparalleled combination of playmaking, shooting and switchability.
Although Gallinari is entering his age-34 campaign, he’s still a reliable floor spacer. Over the last four seasons, he’s averaged 16.0 points and hit 40.8 percent of his three-point attempts. Boston is a great spot for the twilight of his career, where he’ll likely have a healthy portion of his looks created for him.”
A legitimate powerhouse already, as was proved with their immaculate production throughout the vast majority of 2021-22, Bailey is completely convinced that this year’s Celtics deserve to be considered as one of the most likely teams to bring home the Larry O’Brien Trophy.
That said, he also seems to be convinced that making one more specific splash would go on to essentially guarantee this highly coveted fate.
That specific splash: a trade for Kevin Durant.
All summer long, fans, sports pundits, and virtually every media outlet imaginable have been pushing the idea that the Boston Celtics should look to acquire the superstar wing, claiming that such a move would thrust the team closer to a championship.
Based on this piece, it appears that B/R feels this to be the case as well.
“The Celtics already had one of the best rotations in the NBA. Bolstering it as thoroughly as they did this offseason makes them one of the title favorites in 2022-23, and that’s without even considering the Kevin Durant question,” Bailey wrote. “Whether such a trade makes long-term sense for the Celtics is a topic for another day, but adding him to Tatum now would only solidify Boston’s position as a title front-runner.
To us at HH, this is a rather obscure take on the situation, and B/R is certainly not the only publication to preach their sentiment.
The concept of dealing for Kevin Durant to make the Boston Celtics more of a contender for this upcoming season seems to be a little ridiculous when considering the fact that they’re already viewed as the odds-on favorites to do so with the core they have now.
Now, by no means are we stating that the veteran is a subpar talent–he’s a Top-75 player of all time for God’s sake coming off of one of his best seasons to date.
That said, at 33 years old, his days are numbered when it comes to being at the peak of his career, while his recent injury history should be viewed as a completely valid concern.
In almost every realistic scenario, in order for Boston to acquire KD, they’d have to give up their 25-year-old established star in Jaylen Brown in the process, along with a bevy of other valuable assets in the process.
In a nutshell, Bailey is claiming that Durant alongside Jayson Tatum brings the Celtics closer to winning a championship in the near future, which, frankly, May have some weight to it–though, again, they’re already viewed as title favorites for this upcoming season.
That said, by making such a move the championship window shrinks significantly, for this hypothetical pairing may have only two or three years to be top-tier contenders, meanwhile the still-youthful Jays could easily have a decade to compete for supremacy and could even wind up becoming the league’s next great dynasty in the process.
Though there are a few notable reasons for why the Boston Celtics should consider trading for Kevin Durant, there are just as many, if not more for why they shouldn’t.
We at the Houdini are comfortably stationed in this latter mindset.