Boston Celtics Rumors: Cs Looking Forward To Big Offseason, May Re-Sign Evan Turner And Plan To Use Their Plethora Of Draft Picks To Entice Trades

The Boston Celtics were one of the biggest surprises in the NBA this season, finishing tied for the third best record in the Eastern Conference and seventh best record overall. The Celtics are currently preparing for a big offseason with a ton of salary cap, plenty of young talent, and a multitude of draft picks this year.

“We look forward to every offseason. This offseason is bigger,” Boston president of basketball operations Danny Ainge said Wednesday during an end-of-season news conference at the team’s training facility. “My expectations are high this offseason. And yet I also know that it takes good fortune. We need the pingpong balls to bounce our way [at the draft lottery on May 17] to give us the best opportunity. Whether we use that pick or whether we trade that pick, and in free agency, we have opportunities. And that’s all we have.”

Boston, one of the youngest teams in the NBA, went 30-20 once the calendar turned to 2016 and finished with a 48-34 record overall. The Celtics earned the fifth seed in the conference due to tie-breaking procedures and fell to Atlanta in six games in their first round series. The 48 wins are the Cs most in the past five years.

Boston increased their win total by eight games from a year ago, despite having six players 25-years-old or younger on its roster and no 30-year-olds on its roster. 2016 All-Star Isaiah Thomas, along with a pair of young veterans Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder, had breakout seasons and are considered the backbone of the franchise.

One thing is likely, the Celtics’ roster will look very different this upcoming season. Boston could have as much as $57 million in cap space available, per Basketball Insiders. The Celtics also have eight draft selections in this year’s draft, according to Comcast Sports Network New England, with the crown jewel being the selection they received from the Brooklyn Nets in the trade for Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce in 2013.

Evan Turner is the Celtics’ only unrestricted free agent at this point. Boston does have to decide what to do with Jarred Sullinger and Tyler Zeller – both of whom are slated to become restricted free agents – as well as Jonas Jerebko, Amir Johnson and John Holland. Jerebko, Johnson, and Holland have non-guaranteed contracts for next year.

The Boston Herald reported that head coach Brad Stevens would love for the team to re-sign Turner. The 27-year-old has done a little bit of everything while with the Celtics the past two years. The problem is that his range is limited, and he turns the ball over a little too much. Turner averaged 10.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 4.4 assists this past season.

Turner told the Boston Globe that he is open to returning to the Cs.

“I want to get a decent amount of money, you know what I’m saying? But at the same time the fit is going to be huge and the opportunity to play on a winning team. I have played on [bad] teams a couple times and it’s not fun. But obviously the fit, the opportunity to play, and the opportunity to progress and win.”

Sullinger, Johnson, and Jerebko have all indicated their desire to re-sign with the Celtics.

With Brooklyn’s pick (21-61), the Celtics have a 15.6 percent chance of winning the draft lottery and obtaining the No. 1 overall pick. No matter what, the Celtics are guaranteed to have a top-six pick. Boston has two other first round selections (16th and 23rd overall), along with five second-round picks (31st, 35th, 45th, 51st and 58th).

With so many assets, expect the Celtics to work the phones more than normal. If the Celtics can’t work out a deal or two or three, they may go to the draft and stash route.

“There are scenarios where our team could be better, and be significantly better,” Ainge told Mass Live, and there are scenarios where we have younger players that are maybe not as good from a win/record standpoint, but with the development that standpoint being a much, much higher ceiling. ”

The Celtics have already started to work out some potential draft picks. Boston reportedly plans invite between 80-100 potential draft picks this summer. The Cs held workouts for six players on Wednesday and plan another session this weekend.

Boston’s main need this offseason is a low-post scorer and shot-blocker. The Celtics could also use a perimeter player who can shoot from a long range and be a true point guard.

Boston has been linked to several players since the February trade deadline, such as Kevin Durant, Al Horford, Dwight Howard, DeMarcus Cousins, and Carmelo Anthony.

[Photo by Elise Amendola/Associated Press]

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