NBA Trade Rumors: Anthony Davis To Celtics In Four-Player Deal With Pelicans

The latest NBA trade rumors are reiterating the Boston Celtics' desire to bring in a star player before the 2016-17 season gets underway. A lengthy list of NBA All-Stars have been linked to the Celtics during the offseason, but there is a fresh rumor circulating that a new target has emerged for Boston as we near the start of the regular season.

According to the Parent Herald, the Celtics have been looking at possible trades for Kings center DeMarcus Cousins and swingman Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls. The report goes on to state that Boston may now be focusing their efforts on Anthony Davis, the All-Star power forward who currently plays for the New Orleans Pelicans.

Now that the Celtics' interest in Davis has been revealed, more information is coming to light with regard to a possible deal between Boston and New Orleans. One trade scenario being discussed online is a four-player swap that would send Anthony Davis to Beantown. The rumored deal would have the Celtics shipping point guard Marcus Smart, small forward Jaylen Brown, and power forward Amir Johnson to the Pelicans. Additionally, Boston is said to be including a future first-round draft choice in their offer for Davis.

When specific NBA trade rumors are detailed via the internet, one can verify the validity of these potential deals by determining if the NBA would allow such a transaction. In this case, the proposed trade between the Celtics and Pelicans satisfies all NBA trade and salary cap rules (per the ESPN NBA Trade Machine). The structure of this rumored trade is legitimate, but would both teams agree to this proposal?


The Celtics would give up three players and a draft pick to acquire Anthony Davis in this scenario. Amir Johnson would be replaced by Davis at power forward, so that is a humongous upgrade for Boston. Jaylen Brown is a promising rookie, but he should begin the season on the bench behind Jae Crowder. Marcus Smart is another player with talent, but after two years in the NBA, Smart is still playing as a backup for the Celtics. Even with the addition of a future first-round draft choice, this trade would be a very good one for Boston.

The New Orleans Pelicans are said to be considering a rebuild, since the team has stagnated with their current core players -- trading Anthony Davis for several assets would be one way to get the franchise moving in a different direction. Davis' departure would clearly leave the Pelicans weaker at power forward, but Amir Johnson would help soften the blow (he would be a likely starter for New Orleans if this trade goes through).

It is conceivable that both Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown could challenge for starting spots, as well. Smart would probably be the Pelicans' starting point guard from day one, and once Brown gained some NBA playing experience, he would push Solomon Hill for the starting small forward gig. Either way, Jaylen Brown would play significant minutes for New Orleans and could be a future star whether he remains in Boston or not.

Boston would definitely want to make this trade, and there is much to like about it for New Orleans, too. The deciding factor here would be the direction the Pelicans want to take with their team. If they are convinced that they aren't going to contend with Davis as their go-to guy, then this deal would be tempting. However, if general manager Dell Demps prefers to stick it out with Anthony Davis in an attempt to compete with the best the Western Conference has to offer, then he would be much more likely to turn down the Celtics' rumored offer.

Current NBA trade rumors are circulating that the Boston Celtics and New Orleans Pelicans may be contemplating a major deal for three-time NBA All-Star power forward Anthony Davis. This would be a trade Celtics general manager Danny Ainge would jump on, but the Pelicans would need a little arm-twisting to make this deal happen -- although the merit of the proposed trade package from Boston is in the neighborhood of "fair value" for Davis. Do you think Danny Ainge's skills as a salesman are good enough to convince Dell Demps to part with his only star player?

[Featured Image by Bill Haber/AP Images]