The Boston Celtics and NBA trade rumors have been inseparable lately. The Celtics are looking to improve their rebounding and interior defense, as described in detail by Fox Sports. There are a number of power forwards and centers who have been rumored to be on Boston’s radar, but as we inch closer to the trade deadline, one veteran big man has seemingly moved to the forefront of the Celtics’ trade focus.
Phoenix Suns center Tyson Chandler is now being discussed as a potential addition to Boston’s lineup. Fansided reports that if the Celtics are able to acquire Chandler, he could take over the center position and allow Al Horford to move to power forward. This would give Boston’s front line a boost in both rebounding and defense — the two areas they are on a quest to improve.
The Boston Globe has published an article that dissects the assets the Celtics can use to make a move for a big man in the trade market. The combination of center Tyler Zeller and power forward Jonas Jerebko is mentioned as a two-player offer that could help Boston upgrade their center position. The piece points out that Jonas Jerebko is a solid role player and has value to a contending team such as the Celtics, but he and Zeller may have to be unloaded if the team wants to add another frontcourt player to support Al Horford.
The latest NBA trade rumors are pointing toward a possible deal between the Boston Celtics and Phoenix Suns. The scenario that is being shared and debated online is a three-player swap: the Celtics would obtain Tyson Chandler, while the Suns would acquire Tyler Zeller and Jonas Jerebko. Rumor has it that Boston may also be offering to add multiple future second-round draft pics to make this deal happen. Incidentally, this would be a legal trade according to the ESPN NBA Trade Machine.
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Tyson Chandler may not be the superstar that Boston was hoping to bring in, but he would shore up the team’s deficiencies in the paint, and he could be had at a much more reasonable cost than someone like DeMarcus Cousins would have commanded. The Celtics’ cost in this hypothetical transaction would be negligible, because Zeller and Jerebko would become spare parts if Chandler became the center and Horford moved to power forward. Kelly Olynyk and Amir Johnson would back up Chandler and Horford, so Boston would continue to have good depth at these spots if this deal is consummated.
Things don’t look so rosy from the Phoenix Suns’ point of view. They are already deep at power forward with Marquese Chriss, Jared Dudley and Dragan Bender, so there really isn’t a place for Jonas Jerebko in the Suns’ rotation. Tyler Zeller and Alex Len would battle for the starting center duties, but the addition of Zeller would only be of limited value to Phoenix. This rumored proposal might give the Suns increased salary cap flexibility over the next two years, but not much more.
Much of the motivation for Phoenix to do a deal with the Celtics would be in the draft choices being offered. This example from the current batch of NBA trade rumors indicates that Boston is offering as many as three second-round picks, but in order to get the Suns to go for this proposal, the Celtics may have to make their 2018 first-round pick a part of this transaction. These talks are ongoing, so adjustments could be made to the scenario that is currently being reported online. Tyson Chandler could help Boston move up the ladder in the Eastern Conference, but the team might have to up their offer a bit to convince Phoenix to send their seven-foot-one center to the Celtics.
[Featured Image by Rick Scuteri/AP Images]