Spurs guard Derrick White was shocked by the team’s decision to trade him to the Celtics this week, Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News writes. By trading White, San Antonio acquired Josh Richardson, Romeo Langford, a 2022 first-round pick (top-four protected), and the right to swap first-round picks with Boston in 2028 (top-one protected).
“The whole coaching staff, training staff, front office – I had a lot of love for everybody, all my teammates and everything,” he said. “So, I can’t really put into words how much I love all of them. It was hard for me, but I knew once I got here, it’s a new chapter and I am ready to get after it.”
White will add backcourt depth to a Celtics team that also traded Dennis Schröder on Thursday. He made his debut on Friday against Denver, recording 15 points and six rebounds in 28 minutes off the bench.
There’s more from the Southwest Division:
- Pelicans center Willy Hernangomez has exited the NBA’s health and safety protocols, according to ESPN’s Andrew Lopez (Twitter link). Hernangomez is expected to be available for the team’s game against San Antonio on Saturday. He originally entered protocols on February 3.
- The Pelicans and Trail Blazers didn’t require any physicals in the trade that featured star guard CJ McCollum, Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report tweets. ESPN’s Bobby Marks said on The Lowe Post that New Orleans waived McCollum’s physical (hat tip RealGM), so it’s still unclear if physicals were waived for all of the players involved in the deal. As Marks notes, it’s unusual for a team to waive a physical when the player has significant money left on his contract. McCollum will make $30.9MM this season, $33.3MM in 2022/23 and $35.8MM in 2023/24. He missed time due to a collapsed lung back in December.
- The Spurs are entering a new phase of its rebuild, Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News writes. In addition to trading White, the team also made some other moves on Thursday, including sending veteran forward Thaddeus Young to Toronto. San Antonio currently ranks 12th in the Western Conference at 21-35.