ESPN’s Woj decided to break some news today while talking to Zach Lowe.
“Boston has been hawking Anthony Davis for years. They always hoped that it would be—whether it’s the end of this season or the beginning of next before the trade deadline—that they would gather up all those assets, all those picks Danny Ainge has, young players, and they’d be the team to be able to get Anthony Davis.
“But now you have L.A., and if they get shut out in free agency, they’re going to have to take all their young players to try to use them to get Anthony Davis.”
The Celtics and Lakers are in a race to get Anthony Davis from the Pelicans. They have both accumulated the assets they need to create a blockbuster trade with the Lakers.
Danny Ainge and the Celtics have been known to have accumulated draft picks over the years, ever since the Brooklyn trade. They have a solid young core as well with Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, Terry Rozier, and Kyrie (who is young compared to the team’s other players). The Celtics have a galore of trade assets which can be given out for new, young players, as they continue to set up for the future.
The Lakers have a number of assets as well. They have a core of young players as well, with Kuzma, Ingram, and Lonzo (who I doubt they would trade). Bleacher Report reported that the Lakers would be open to trading Ingram as well, so there is some possibility of LA trading their young players and some draft picks.
Anthony Davis’s contract ends after next season, when he will become a free agent. His contract was able to be made due to the Rose Rule (Rose Rule Article). Kyrie Irving and Davis are both Rose Rule players, making it impossible for them to be on the same team, due to the rules of the league.
Woj’s quote is interesting because he was specifically talking about how the Celtics are preparing to trade for him, and not wait for his free agency because LA is going after Davis as well. In order to trade for Davis, the Celtics would have to trade Kyrie away, so that he is not on the team at the same time as Davis, so this makes me wonder if they would be willing to trade Kyrie away to get Davis.
Reasons Why the Celtics could Trade for Him:
1) Pelicans front office and needs
A trade giving Anthony Davis away might make sense for the Pelicans. Just a year ago, Alvin Gentry (Pelicans head coach) and Dell Demps (Pelicans GM) were on the hot seat because the Pelicans were struggling to get wins even with Davis. They were able to turn things around last year, and got to the playoffs, but they are finding themselves struggling again, so maybe Gentry does not have the right solution for the problem. In my opinion, they should bring in another coach, but they do not seem to be moving in that direction, so trading Davis might be the first step for them.
Reasons Why the Celtics may not Trade for Him:
1) Celtics depth
The Celtics have too many bigs on this team. Brad Stevens uses a positionless system where players are either ball-handlers, wings, or bigs, and Davis falls into the bigs category. This team does not have any big weaknesses in a certain position, so it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to get another big.
2) Davis and Kyrie’s desires
This is probably the biggest reason the Celtics will not get Davis. Kyrie has already expressed many times that he wants to stay in Boston and play for this team for many more years. Davis has expressed that he wants to win, but in New Orleans.
“It’s not about the money. It’s not about having fans. The most important thing to me: winning. That’s what I want to do. And I want to do it here.”
Kyrie would have to be shipped out if we want Davis, and that doesn’t seem to be in either of the players’ interests.