After failing to nab a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference last season, rumors have started to swirl around Lauri Markkanen and his growing unhappiness with the Chicago Bulls. There is speculation that Markkanen could soon find his way out of Chicago if the direction of the organization remains unchanged. He may start the 2020-21 NBA season as a Bull, but if they struggle early on, he could demand to be moved before the 2021 trade deadline.
One of the teams that could try to save Markkanen from the Bulls is the Boston Celtics. According to Jake Rogers of NBA Analysis Network, the Celtics could acquire him by sending a package that includes Romeo Langford, Grant Williams, Aaron Nesmith, and a 2021 first-round pick to Chicago.
Though it would cost them three young and promising talents and a future first-rounder, Rogers believes that the proposed scenario makes a lot of sense for the Celtics. With the team currently in win-now mode, they should continue looking for ways to improve their roster in order to have a better chance of winning the NBA championship title next season. Markkanen may not be an All-Star, but he would give the Celtics something they don't have -- a starting-caliber big man who is capable of efficiently knocking down shots from beyond the arc.
"With the Celtics, they need some help in the front-court. The offseason addition of Tristan Thompson will help, but they also need a big who can shoot the ball and stretch the floor. Lauri Markkanen could be that guy who would fit nicely alongside Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Kemba Walker, and Marcus Smart. Markkanen has shot 35.6 percent from the three-point line in his three seasons with the Bulls. That number is not shabby for a seven-foot big man, but many believe he should be shooting a higher percentage. With that in mind, this trade could make even more sense for the Celtics."
The arrival of Markkanen would undeniably bring about a huge improvement to the Celtics' frontcourt. Also, at 23, he perfectly fits the timeline of franchise cornerstones Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. If he manages to improve his performance on the defensive end of the floor, Markkanen would give the Celtics a better matchup against powerhouse teams with dominant big men like Anthony Davis (Los Angeles Lakers), Bam Adebayo (Miami Heat), Nikola Jokic (Denver Nuggets), Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks), and Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers).
Markkanen would likely welcome the idea of being traded to Boston. Compared to the Bulls, joining the Celtics wouldn't only give him the opportunity to make the playoffs, but also a realistic chance of winning his first championship ring.