It has been an eventful week in Boston, with the Celtics having acquired a four-time All-Star on Tuesday, sending Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic, and the Nets’ 2018 first-round pick to Cleveland in exchange for Kyrie Irving. The NBA world is still buzzing about that deal, and we have a few more Celtics-related notes on the swap to pass along today:
- The Celtics aren’t in a rush to fill their newly-opened 15th roster spot, but have been in touch with a few free agents this week, including veteran center Andrew Bogut, reports Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe.
- Appearing on The Bill Simmons Podcast this week, Finals MVP Kevin Durant praised Irving for standing up for himself and deciding it was time for him to move on from what seemed like a good situation in Cleveland. “He showed a lot of courage, man, because it’s hard to take that type of criticism,” said Durant (link via ESPN.com), who has some experience in that field himself.
- Durant also suggested during that podcast appearance that Irving and the Celtics will be “perfect” for each other, as DJ Bean of CSNNE.com details. “It’s a perfect fit, because he’s a 6-foot-3 Isaiah Thomas, basically,” Durant said. “And Isaiah just thrived in that system, and then he’s got Gordon Hayward and Al Horford that are going to be able to make plays for him, too. It’s going to be pretty sweet. I think it was a great deal.”
- Revisiting Danny Ainge‘s assertion that the Celtics “have a lot of good players, but need some great ones,” ESPN’s Chris Forsberg makes the case that Ainge’s willingness to roll the dice on Irving signals that the team is making good on that statement and raising the roof on its expectations for 2017/18.
- Young wings Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum may end up being the biggest winners of the Irving blockbuster, according to Benny Nadeau of Basketball Insiders, who notes that the departures of Avery Bradley and Crowder open the door for those youngsters to take on significant roles in Boston.