NBA trade rumors state that Boston Celtics team president Danny Ainge was looking around the league to see if there were any interest in David Lee. The veteran forward has seen his minutes and role decline because the Celtics want to build around their younger front court players, which does not sit well with Lee. Now, reports are surfacing that Ainge could be buying out Lee’s final year of his contract if no suitable trade is thrown his way, according to ESPN.
If the buyout happens soon, then David Lee should have plenty of suitors from contending NBA teams that want to load the roster at the last minute before the playoffs roll around. Since his contract is being bought out, Lee will still be receiving a substantial amount of money from the Celtics, which means that he can sign with another team for the minimum contract allowed for a veteran of his stature.
The New Orleans Pelicans were recently linked to a rumored trade with the Detroit Pistons because Stan Van Gundy wanted to be reunited with Ryan Anderson. The sweet shooting six-foot, 10-inch forward seems like a natural fit alongside All-Star center Andre Drummond, who prefers to operate in the post. If that move happens, then David Lee can replace Anderson and help Anthony Davis put up points in the paint.
Dirk Nowitzki doesn’t have a whole lot of time left in the NBA, so Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has committed to providing as much help as he can so that his star forward can win a second championship before retiring. Cuban lucked out when Zaza Pachulia saved their center position after the DeAndre Jordan fiasco. Adding David Lee, especially for cheap, would help to take some of the offensive burden off of Nowitzki.
The Miami Heat know that they are going to have a hard time beating the Cleveland Cavaliers in a seven game NBA Playoffs series, so they need as much help as they can get. Chris Bosh is one of the best two-way players in the NBA, while Hassan Whiteside provides the excitement and highlight reels. Depth behind them is a bit bare, as Udonis Haslem is averaging less than 10 minutes a game nowadays, so David Lee could be of some assistance there.
Carmelo Anthony has matured as a player, and he’s trying his best to be the team leader. However, that’s not a natural thing for him to do, so it would not be a bad thing for New York Knicks president Phil Jackson to bring in another veteran that can help guide the young team. David Lee is quite the leader, and he showed a tremendous amount of patience and professionalism when he was removed from the rotation by eventual NBA Champions Golden State Warriors.
One of the first things that Jerry Colangelo did when he took over the Philadelphia 76ers was make the decision that the team needed more leadership in the locker room. That’s why he was quick to sign Elton Brand. Colangelo and head coach Brett Brown want to make sure that there are leaders for younger players such as Jahlil Okafor, Nerlens Noel, and Joel Embiid, so David Lee could find himself joining Brand in that role.
Los Angeles Lakers head coach Byron Scott has butted head on more than a few occasions with Julius Randle this year. He knows that his young power forward isn’t completely listening to him, so a veteran player might be useful to have around. David Lee can not only teach Randle the ways of the NBA, but he can also fill in at center on nights where Roy Hibbert is simply not being effective.
[Featured Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images]