The Boston Celtics finally made their presence felt in the 2017 NBA offseason by signing Gordon Hayward. The Celtics still need to create some cap space to officially sign Hayward and they need to trade one or two of their key role players. However, it seems like Boston is looking to form a new superteam as the latest NBA rumors suggest that they could trade for Marc Gasol.
According to Chris Mannix of The Vertical, two NBA executives named Marc Gasol as a potential trade target for the Boston Celtics. Mannix believes that the Celtics can offer a nice package of players and picks to the Memphis Grizzlies in order to acquire Gasol.
The Grizzlies appear to be heading to a rebuild with Zach Randolph joining the Sacramento Kings and Tony Allen possibly not getting re-signed. Memphis still has Mike Conley and Gasol but they are not going to go far in the playoffs or possibly not even make it with the Western Conference getting more stacked.
The Western Conference is ruled by the Warriors followed by the Spurs and Rockets. The Thunder added Paul George, Minnesota acquired Jimmy Butler and Jeff Teague and the Nuggets signed Paul Millsap. The Pelicans still have Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins while the Blazers, Clippers and Jazz can put up a fight.
Bobby Manning of SB Nation believes that Marc Gasol could make the Celtics even better. He pointed out that Boston lacks a defensive anchor and Gasol is exactly like that. The 32-year-old center is a former Defensive Player of the Year and he also improved his offense. Gasol attempted 3.1 threes per game last season and he hit 38.8 percent of them.
Manning also suggested a potential trade that could acquire Marc Gasol from the Grizzlies. The Celtics have to sacrifice a lot to make it work. They have to trade Avery Bradley, Jae Crowder, Marcus Smart, and three other players. The deal not only works but it also creates cap space to officially sign Gordon Hayward.
“In order to take on Gasol’s $22.6-million 2017-18 salary, the Celts have to dump quite a few bodies. Crowder at $6.8 million, Bradley at $8.8 million, Rozier at $2 million, Smart at $4.5 million, Jackson at $1.3 million and Mickey at $1.4 million add about to roughly $25 million in salary. That works in a trade for Gasol, leaving enough room to finalize the Hayward deal on top of it.”
For those who do not know, the Celtics have not officially signed Hayward to his four-year, $128 million deal. Boston still needs to clear up cap space even though they already waived Tyler Zeller and renounced their rights to Kelly Olynyk. Celtics general manager Danny Ainge has to let go of certain players to free up money and there is a chance that he could get creative to add Gasol.
ESPN reported that the Celtics are shopping Bradley, Crowder, and Smart in order to free up the cap space necessary to sign Gordon Hayward. A sign-and-trade involving Hayward and Crowder was suggested but the Celtics also reportedly had discussions with at least 12 teams.
However, it should be noted that these are still rumors at the moment and nothing has been confirmed. The Celtics are finally making some noise this offseason and they could really push the Cleveland Cavaliers in the weakened Eastern Conference if they can officially sign Hayward and possibly acquire Gasol.
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