Paul Pierce has some sage advice for the Boston Celtics and what they should do with the top overall pick in the NBA draft. No one knows what the Boston Celtics will do, but Paul Pierce makes a compelling argument.
According to USA Today, the former Celtics great was being interviewed on ESPN’s The Jump, when he stated that Boston should trade the No. 1 pick. Paul Pierce believes that the Celtics would be better off as a franchise with the addition of an established star player in the fold versus a rookie.
“You trade this pick, because he cannot help the Celtics get over the top. The window is now. You’re a 50-win team, you’re the No. 1 seed. You have to build on this momentum. If you can acquire a Paul George, a Jimmy Butler, or a Gordon (Hayward) from Utah, you have to do it.”
The Boston Celtics are close to being true title contenders, yet they are one player away.
Against the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Celtics are listed as a prohibitive underdogs in the Eastern Conference Finals. If they had another player who is the caliber of Jimmy Butler or Paul George, they would fare much better. As of now, the Celtics hope to at least be competitive against the Cavs. They could be in position to make the next step next season.
— Mike & Mike (@MikeAndMike) May 17, 2017
For the Boston Celtics to make the leap, they must acquire another all-star. Utah Jazz forward Gordon Hayward makes sense for them, due to his status as a future free agent. And with the ESPN report about Hayward being ineligible for the $200 million extension, that takes away the extra incentive for Hayward to stay in Utah.
Can The Celtics Take A Gamble On NBA Free Agency?
Going back to his interview, Paul Pierce made a point to mention that Hayward’s status as a free agent could help the Celtics go for the NBA championship right away.
“I would try to persuade Gordon to sign as a free agent. You don’t have to trade for him. You go out, you try to get Gordon. Now, you have a chance with the No. 1 pick to try to acquire Jimmy Butler or Paul George, you go for it. You need these guys. You want to get over the top. Boston doesn’t praise winning the Eastern Conference. They’re going for a championship.”
A Boston Celtics’ team featuring Isaiah Thomas, Al Horford, and perhaps Gordon Hayward and Jimmy Butler is strong enough to challenge the Cavaliers, along with the other elite teams in the East.
— NBA.com (@NBAcom) May 18, 2017
Pulling off such a coup would take some savvy and confidence. The Celtics have been savvy so far in acquiring the abundance of assets that they have. Hoarding assets will not put the Celtics in position to topple the Cavaliers if they are not used.
As for the No. 1 pick, most predictions have the Celtics taking Washington’s Markelle Fultz. Fultz is far and away the best shooter in this year’s draft, but he will likely become glued to the bench as the Celtics look to contend.
Can Fultz Help The Celtics?
If he can grasp the NBA game quickly and avoid mistakes, the Celtics will be fine. There is a lingering issue that will rear its head a year from now — Isaiah Thomas’ pending free agency. Are the Boston Celtics willing to sacrifice Thomas’ final contract year to wind up getting bounced in the playoffs by the Cleveland Cavaliers once again?
Paul Pierce did not mention this, but it is something that the Celtics must ponder.
There is a clear difference of opinion in regard to what the Boston Celtics should do. Some want the Celtics to keep the pick. Others, including former Boston Celtics’ great Paul Pierce, would like to see them trade the No. 1 pick.
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