The Celtics are exploring ways to improve their roster, according to Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer, who suggests that a sign-and-trade of forward Grant Williams or a trade involving one or more of the team’s guards are among the options in play. Brian Robb of MassLive.com published a similar report, suggesting that a source told him Boston has been one of the most active teams on the trade market.
According to Robb, the Celtics are looking into whether they’ll be able to move a player from their crowded backcourt in order to balance their roster and upgrade at another position. Marcus Smart, Derrick White, Malcolm Brogdon, and Payton Pritchard are all under contract for next season.
While Pritchard is the most logical trade candidate, given that he sought a change of scenery during the 2022/23 season and wasn’t part of the Celtics’ playoff rotation, it might make more sense for Boston to move one of its higher-paid guards, Robb writes. That would allow the Celtics to bring back a bigger salary in a trade or would help create flexibility to re-sign Williams.
Interestingly, James L. Edwards III of The Athletic says (via Twitter) that the Celtics are among the teams to inquire about Isaiah Stewart. However, Edwards doesn’t expect the Pistons to move Stewart, who will be extension-eligible this offseason.
Here are a few more rumors from around the Atlantic, including another one that involves the Pistons:
- Following the Pistons‘ hiring of Monty Williams, Nets restricted free agent forward Cameron Johnson – who played for Williams in Phoenix – is rising on Detroit’s list of free agent targets, according to Marc Stein at Substack. But Brooklyn is “quietly expressing confidence” about its ability to retain Johnson, says Stein, which suggests the team either knows what it will take to re-sign him or fully intends to match any offer he receives as a restricted free agent.
- If the Nets commit to a lucrative new deal for Johnson, will they have to cut costs elsewhere? Stein notes that forward Dorian Finney-Smith is still viewed as a “prime trade candidate,” while Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer hears from sources that Brooklyn has received calls about both Finney-Smith and Royce O’Neale.
- Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports shares a few Sixers-related tidbits in his latest round-up of rumors from around the NBA, writing that the team appears to prefer another short-term deal with free-agent-to-be James Harden and citing sources who say Philadelphia is “actively seeking” opportunities to trade into the second round of next week’s draft. The 76ers don’t currently own a 2023 draft pick.