The NBA landscape has slowed down in recent times as the league seemingly continues to wait on the Brooklyn Nets potentially blowing up their roster. In particular, the Kevin Durant trade negotiations have been the big stumbling block everyone’s waiting on.
From what we could tell, the talks previously focused on the Phoenix Suns and Miami Heat, but with the Nets wanting a massive trade return for one of the game’s best players, neither team has been able to pique Brooklyn’s interest thus far. Then Deandre Ayton’s return to Phoenix likely takes them out of the running. The Toronto Raptors are another team that’s been mentioned.
Now out of nowhere, the Boston Celtics are jumping into the fray. Let’s look at what the Celtics can offer, and how Durant would impact their team.
Boston Celtics could emerge as Kevin Durant sweepstakes winners
After reaching the NBA Finals, the Boston Celtics know they already have a strong roster. They’ve since added Malcolm Brogdon to what was already a well-balanced rotation.
But if they have the chance to add a generational talent such as Kevin Durant? It only makes sense to get involved.
The Nets are reportedly demanding a trade package that includes two All-Stars along with several draft picks that will make the Rudy Gobert trade look minuscule.
Meanwhile, the Celtics actually have a young All-Star in Jaylen Brown, who they’re likely not looking to trade for anyone outside of Durant. Aside from not having their 2023 and 2028 selections, the C’s have all of their own draft picks through 2029.
Shams Charania of The Athletic reports the Celtics have already offered a package that revolves around Brown, widely regarded as the team’s second-best player. Also included were Derrick White, and one draft pick.
As Charania tells it, the Nets are asking the Celtics for Brown, plus Marcus Smart to be included in any proposal. They’d also like an additional rotational player plus draft picks. It’s Kevin Durant, they’re not walking away without a haul.
How Kevin Durant can elevate the Celtics
The Celtics have one of the best two-way players in basketball with Jayson Tatum being the team leader. Sure, not having Marcus Smart to help take the defensive burden would be a big blow. Same with Jaylen Brown, but his loss would be much less impactful as Durant essentially is a straight swap for his scoring, but Durantula takes it to another level.
Losing draft picks shouldn’t be a concern for a team with title aspirations, so they should be prepared to cough up as many as it takes.
But if the cost is Brown, Smart, multiple picks and an additional player, they shouldn’t hesitate to pay the price. Complicating matters will be the fact that the Celtics don’t have many tradeable rotation players. You’re looking at either Derrick White, Robert Williams III, Grant Williams or Payton Pritchard.
Plus, do the Nets really want to strengthen their Eastern Conference foes? They may not have a choice when it comes to trading Durant. They can’t really afford to get picky here. Whatever trade package gives the Nets the best return will be the one they have to take. That just might be the Celtics.