After all the NBA trade rumors, the Boston Celtics may finally strike a deal to get Paul George from Indiana and Jimmy Butler from Chicago. But with all the other teams looking to snatch the players away, will they successfully close their current trade discussions?
An NBA executive reportedly believes that the Celtics will acquire Paul George before the deadline hits. According to Marc Stein in a podcast by Zach Lowe (via CBS Local), he himself doesn’t believe that the trade will happen but those he called apparently believe so.
“I think Indiana is trying to make moves this week to strengthen their roster, to convince Paul George this is the place he should stay. But if you get on the phone and call people, you will find people who think [Jimmy] Butler and/or Paul George are in play.”
With only a few hours until the NBA trade deadline, the Celtics have to contend against other teams that are reportedly interested in George. The L.A. Lakers are also moving to land the NBA player, says USA Today, to possibly fill the void that Kobe Bryant left.
A post shared by Paul George (@ygtrece) on
Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical stated that George has also considered moving to his hometown Los Angeles or rejoin Indiana Pacers when he enters free agency in 2018. Mark Medina also revealed that Lakers may instead wait for him to become a free agent than try for a trade, which may mean that Celtics can swoop in for a deal.
For both Lakers/Paul George's sake, it seems more likely they'll wait for George in free agency than try to get him in trade
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) February 22, 2017
The Philadelphia 76ers could also get involved, too. NJ reports that the Pacers are interested in Jahlil Okafor, whom the Sixers will certainly trade off to another NBA team by the deadline. A trade for Paul George could involve Okafor and Philadelphia’s other assets, which are hard to ignore. The star forward, though, is committed to turning around Indiana Pacers in the second half of the NBA season.
“As far as I know, I’m in this jersey and I’m with this organization,” he told reporters (via IndyStar).
“I’m committed here. Myself and the front office, we’ve had great talks. I’ve got a job to do and I’m trying to turn a season around, trying to get us playing better. That’s where my mind is. It’s easy to block out everything else. I can’t allow that to weigh on me. This is what’s important right now.”
Jimmy Butler to Boston Celtics is reportedly getting real, according to TNT’s David Aldridge. The Celtics are apparently close to a deal, but Bulls want Jae Crowder in exchange. The “main sticking point” in this is that Boston doesn’t want Crowder to go anywhere. David Ainge better make a decision soon, though, as he’s not the only one interested in the NBA All-Star player.
— Brian Robb (@CelticsHub) February 22, 2017
The Sixers could enter the scene again, offering their NBA assets for the Bulls’ forward. However, Chicago Tribune reports that the Bulls do not intend to trade Butler and they have already told this to every NBA team that has come to inquire about him. Even so, with Philadelphia’s assets, they are more than capable of offering a deal that’s hard to refuse.
Jimmy Butler, on the other hand, is calm amid all the NBA trade rumors.
“I can’t worry about that. It don’t bother or scare me none. I’ll be OK. Not saying I’m untradable, but I don’t think about that. Hopefully, I’m not going to get traded, but I don’t control that.”
The Celtics-Bulls and Celtics-Pacers trade talks should soon reach a conclusion with the impending NBA trade deadline. At the end of the week, both Paul George and Jimmy Butler may soon move to Boston to start training with the Celtics.
[Featured Image by Darron Cummings/AP Images]