The Boston Celtics are still the best team in the Eastern Conference, however, they could improve by the NBA trade deadline. With Kyrie Irving and Al Horford leading the charge, the Celtics have managed to win off talent and emotion after the awful injury to Gordon Hayward in the season opener. However, the frontcourt is one area of concern where Celtics must improve, and Zach Randolph could be the answer.
The Celtics have used Aron Baynes (5.9 points, 5.3 rebounds) and Marcus Morris (11.5 points, 5.3 rebounds) next to Horford, however, the Celtics have still struggled on the offensive end. The Celtics average 31.5 three-pointers per game while making 11. Good numbers, however, the Celtics will have to learn the art of halfcourt play when the playoffs arrive. Besides Horford, the Celtics are lacking a true low post player.
By adding Randolph, the Boston Celtics will get one of the best low post players in the league and a veteran to help lead when times get tough in a tight spot. Morris is good, but he’s not the veteran presence you want to lean on when Irving gets jammed up on the perimeter. But why Randolph when there are guys like DeMarcus Cousins and Julius Randle available?
The Sacramento Kings have basically shut down Randolph to let the younger guys develop for the rest of the season according to NBC Bay Area. While Randolph signed with Sacramento be become a mentor, he has earned the right to at least go out on his own terms. But can he still produce? Yes. For the season, Randolph is averaging 14.5 points, 6.8 rebounds in 25.1 minutes per while shooting 49 percent from the floor.
Randolph doesn’t need to average 10 shots per game. He still has the defensive chops to hold other bigs in check, plus he would be the only person on the Celtics roster who can go toe-to-toe with Kevin Love on the blocks. Another thing that’s great about adding Randolph is that he won’t cost the Celtics any picks that may disrupt their future. The Celtics goal is to keep winning while retaining the services of Irving, Jaylen Brown, and Jayson Tatum. Randolph is on the books for an average of $12 million per until 2019 which the Celtics could trade away at the end of the 2017 season. We can’t forget that Hayward will be back next season in which Randolph and Morris will no longer be needed.
To win in the NBA, a veteran presence is needed especially in the post where the playoffs come down to halfcourt sets, rebounds, and defense. Why should the Celtics continue to flirt with greatness for the future when they can achieve it now?