According to a recently published list of trade ideas, the Boston Celtics could form their own “superteam” by making a deal for Russell Westbrook, who has been rumored in recent days to be wanting a trade from the Houston Rockets.
On Saturday, Fadeaway World wrote that the Celtics appear to have improved since Kyrie Irving moved to the Brooklyn Nets in the summer of 2019, given how forward Jayson Tatum stepped up as the club’s “franchise player” and produced big numbers on the offensive end. The outlet wrote that the Celtics’ core group of wingmen — Tatum, Gordon Hayward, and Jaylen Brown — might be able to benefit even more from the presence of Westbrook.
As further suggested, the proposed deal, which would send Kemba Walker, Marcus Smart, and the No. 14 selection in this year’s NBA Draft to the Rockets, might be good enough to help the Celtics contend for a championship in the 2020-21 season. The publication added that Tatum could serve as an equivalent to former league MVP Kevin Durant, who teamed up with Westbrook for several years with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
While Fadeaway World stressed that Walker (20.4 points, 3.9 rebounds, 4.8 assists per game) will likely be the All-Star-caliber player the Rockets will demand in exchange for Westbrook in the hypothetical trade, the site speculated that the team might ask for Brown, who averaged a career-high 20.3 points along with 6.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists, per Basketball-Reference. However, the Rockets, as noted, might have to “settle” for Smart, who led the Celtics in steals (1.7 per contest) and stood out as a top-flight defender as a part-time starter at point guard.
“Walker, Smart, and [2019-20 scoring leader James Harden] are a very good Big Three in their own right; but Westbrook makes the Celtics a legitimate Finals contender because he might be more efficient playing with Tatum under head coach Brad Stevens. This is a win-win for both sides,” Fadeaway World concluded.
Aside from the aforementioned trade idea, Westbrook has been the subject of several proposed trades in recent days. These include some hypothetical three-way trades, including one that would send the nine-time All-Star to the Hornets, with Harden moving to the Philadelphia 76ers and erstwhile Sixers point guard Ben Simmons going to Houston. Most reports have linked Westbrook to teams such as the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Clippers, though it has been pointed out that it might be hard to absorb the more than $130 million remaining on his current contract.