Celtics Nearly Traded Ray Allen To Grizzlies

April 18 2012 at 8:25am CDT By Luke Adams

Although the Celtics ended up standing pat at last month's trade deadline, the team was close to making one or two blockbuster moves and breaking up its Big Three, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.

According to Wojnarowski, Ray Allen received a phone call from Celtics coach Doc Rivers, telling him he'd been traded to the Grizzlies for a package that included O.J. Mayo and a draft pick. However, shortly after the call, Allen received word that the deal had fallen apart.

The Celtics also had serious discussions with the Nets about a deal that would've sent Paul Pierce to New Jersey in exchange for Mehmet Okur and a lottery pick, says Wojnarowski. Grantland's Bill Simmons wrote of those talks last week, noting that the Nets eventually elected to acquire Gerald Wallace from Portland for a similar package (one which also included Shawne Williams).

While the Celtics have played their best basketball of the season since the deadline and are a popular choice to upset the Bulls or Heat in the Eastern playoffs, the team's failed trades are interesting to consider. Had they made those deals, Boston would be heading into the summer armed with three first-round picks and even more cap flexibility, without Pierce on next year's books. We'll see if the Celtics' Big Three has one more run left to reward GM Danny Ainge's deadline decision to stand pat.

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