Are the Chicago Bulls looking to trade Jimmy Butler to the Boston Celtics? There are a few reasons why it is believed that the Bulls and Celtics will revisit their offseason trade talks leading up to the February 23 trade deadline. Will anything happen between the Bulls-Celtics on the trade market?
One of the most overblown NBA trade rumors from the summer of 2016 has slowly come back to life. Jimmy Butler to the Boston Celtics is a trade idea that has been in the back of the minds of anyone who follows the NBA. And as the weeks wind down, it can actually take place. It will just require some creativity and perhaps a third team involved.
According to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune, trade discussions could be rekindled between the Bulls and Celtics. Per K.C. Johnson, the initial trade proposal of Jimmy Butler for Avery Johnson, Jae Crowder, and draft picks could be back on the table. But for a player of Butler’s status, it will not be enough.
The Chicago Bulls, a team that is mired in mediocrity, must make a bold move. For an organization that is not known to make drastic changes, bold moves are not expected. Making the playoffs is a priority for the Bulls. They are currently seventh in the Eastern Conference standings.
Boston Celtics has a lot of picks to offer to Jimmy Butler….a lot pic.twitter.com/mUtAfo9kuC
— Chicago Sports News (@ChiSportUpdates) February 2, 2017
Seventh place in the East is only good enough for the Bulls to have a first-round pairing with either the Celtics, Toronto Raptors, or Washington Wizards. Neither match-up would be great for the Bulls. And there is no reason to believe that things will get better in the next few years for the Bulls.
In a perfect world, the Chicago Bulls’ front office would realize the fact that the team is far away from competing for an NBA championship. They must realize that change is good, as long as it is not a change for the sake of doing something else. Once the reality comes to fruition, there is something that could happen between the Bulls, Celtics, and a third team.
That third team should be the Philadelphia 76ers. With the CSN Chicago report regarding the Bulls reaching out to the Sixers about the availability of center Jahlil Okafor, the following trade scenario should be considered.
Jimmy Butler to the Celtics, with Avery Bradley, Nikola Mirotic, and a draft pick going to the Sixers. The Bulls would get Jahlil Okafor, Jae Crowder, the draft rights to Guerschon Yabusele and draft picks.
— NBA TV (@NBATV) February 1, 2017
This three-team trade with the Bulls, Celtics, and Sixers would be huge. Each team would come out of the trade with what they need.
For the Boston Celtics, they get the superstar they have long coveted in Jimmy Butler. Butler, teamed with point guard Isaiah Thomas and Al Horford, could be enough to push the Celtics past the Cleveland Cavaliers. It would make them a favorite to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals at the very least. In giving up Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder, the Celtics would lose a little bit of their depth but gain an emerging shot-maker.
The Sixers would receive a stout defensive player, with an ever-expanding offensive game in Avery Bradley. Bradley has improved his dribbling enough where he can handle some point guard duties. An upgrade made to the point guard position could propel the Sixers up the standings. Getting Nikola Mirotic from the Bulls could give the Sixers a motivated player, looking to regain his confidence.
With the Bulls, they would get one of the players they covet in Jahlil Okafor. His ability to score in the low post would give the Bulls an offensive element that they currently do not have. As for his woes on defense and lack of rebounding, those would improve over time with positioning and effort.
— CSN Chicago (@CSNChicago) February 3, 2017
The Bulls adding Jae Crowder would help both defensively and in rebounding. Crowder would not replace the scoring that Jimmy Butler has provided, but a combination of Crowder and Okafor would help fill the void.
Also, their additions in this trade scenario would not necessarily knock the Bulls out of the playoff race. The Bulls are already teetering on being a playoff team with Jimmy Butler. Changing things on the roster will not hurt the Chicago Bulls’ postseason hopes a great deal. There is another benefit to trading Jimmy Butler to the Boston Celtics.
Any of the draft picks the Chicago Bulls would receive would have to include the Brooklyn Nets’ pick that the Boston Celtics own. It can conceivably turn into the top overall pick. At the worst, that draft pick would fall to No. 4.
The upcoming NBA draft has been compared to the 2003 draft class that featured LeBron James and Dwyane Wade. While there may not be a LeBron or even a Wade in this group, the dearth of potential stars is present. Can the Chicago Bulls, who are still contemplating a rebuild, do what they can to ensure getting a top draft pick?
That would be their reasoning to revisiting the Jimmy Butler trade talks with the Boston Celtics.
[Featured Image by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images]