NBA Rumors: Celtics Could Acquire Dejounte Murray For Marcus Smart, Aaron Nesmith & Draft Pick

Dejounte Murray making plays for the Spurs
Gettyimages | Pool
Basketball

The Boston Celtics recently engaged in a trade deal that sent Kemba Walker to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for veteran center Al Horford. The trade helped the Celtics get rid of Walker's massive salary while addressing their need for a defensive-minded big man. However, it also created a huge hole in their backcourt.

When the 2020-21 NBA season is officially over, the Celtics are expected to find Walker's replacement who would serve as their new starting point guard next year.

Dejounte Murray To Boston Celtics

Dejounte Murray finding an open teammate
Gettyimages | Brett Carlsen

One of the potential trade targets for the Celtics is Dejounte Murray of the San Antonio Spurs. In a recent article, Greg Patuto of NBA Analysis Network came up with a hypothetical trade idea that would enable the Celtics to acquire Murray from the Spurs this summer.

In the proposed trade scenario, the Celtics would be sending a package that includes Marcus Smart, Aaron Nesmith, and the No. 45 overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft to the Spurs in exchange for Murray.

Dejounte Murray Gives Celtics Long-Term Answer At Starting PG Spot

Dejounte Murray leading Spurs' offense
Gettyimages | Maddie Meyer

Murray would be an intriguing trade target for the Celtics. At 24, he perfectly fits the timeline of Celtics' franchise cornerstones Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. His potential arrival in Boston would immediately address their need for a starting-caliber point guard.

Aside from being a great playmaker, Murray is also a reliable scorer, rebounder, perimeter defender, and floor-spacer. This season, the young floor general averaged 15.7 points, 7.1 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.5 steals while shooting 45.3 percent from the field and 31.7 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN.

Spurs Open To Trading Dejounte Murray

Dejounte Murray shooting the ball from the perimeter
Gettyimages | Brett Carlsen

Unlike in the previous offseasons, there's indeed a strong possibility for the Spurs to trade Murray this summer. Murray was initially viewed as one of the young players that would lead the Spurs back to title contention. Unfortunately, Murray has failed to live up to expectations and has dealt with numerous injuries in the past years.

Though the Spurs aren't actively trading Murray, Zach Harper of The Athletic revealed in his recent piece that the young point guard "could be gettable" on the trade market around draft time.

Does The Proposed Trade Make Sense For The Spurs?

Marcus Smart telling his teammate who to guard
Gettyimages | Maddie Meyer

Patuto believes that the proposed deal would be worth exploring for the Spurs, especially if they no longer consider Murray as part of their long-term future.

"Marcus Smart would take over as a replacement for Murray as he enters the final year of his current contract. San Antonio would gain more long-term financial flexibility as a result," Patuto wrote. "The Spurs also get a second-round pick in the 2021 NBA Draft along with Aaron Nesmith, who was the No. 14 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft."

However, if they intend to undergo a full-scale rebuild, it remains a big question if the trade package that includes Smart, Nemisth, and the No. 45 pick would be enough to persuade the Spurs to send Murray to Boston. To further convince them to make a deal, the Celtics may also need to give up another young player or a future first-rounder.