With the Celtics close to acquiring shooting guard Courtney Lee from the Houston Rockets in a sign-and-trade deal, SI’s Chris Mannix joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s The D.A. Show Thursday night to break it all down.
“If it goes down I think it’s a win for the Celtics. Courtney Lee is a very good player — a young player,” said Mannix. “(He’s) a guy that has proven he can be a starter in this league. He’s a very good defensive player at that two-guard spot, shoots a good percentage from the three-point range. He’s not a star but he’s a serviceable guy who can give you very good, quality minutes as a backup or a spot starter.”
In the reported deal, Boston would send second year players JaJuan Johnson and E’Twaun Moore, Sean Williams and a second-round pick to Houston. Mannix says each of those players are replaceable, and Johnson was being outplayed by first-round pick Jared Sullinger in the Summer League, likely meaning he would be far down on the C’s depth chart come next season.
“It’s all upside if you’re Boston in acquiring Courtney Lee. He’s a much more proven commodity than what they’re giving up,” said Mannix.
While the financial aspects of the deal could be what’s holding it up from being completed — Mannix noted that Lee’s agent is the “Scott Boras of NBA Agents” — all signs are pointing in the right direction.
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While Lee is a very good shooter and solid defender, he won’t help the Celtics’ lack of rebounding — their biggest problem last season. Is there anything left on the free agent market that could help the Celtics on the glass next season?
“There aren’t really any clutch rebounding types out there… It could be a situation where you take a flyer on the next Greg Stiemsma type,” said Mannix. “There are a large chunk of free agents out there looking for jobs at this moment. They could take a flyer on one of those types of players, but the Celtics have to hope Kevin Garnett holds up again, Brandon Bass steps in, Sullinger can defy the draft odds and contribute this team next year; they’ve kind of got to rely on what they have because the market has kind of dried up.”
Plus, how does Mannix feel about Jeff Green heading into the new season? Was he worth the four-year, $40 million the Celtics signed him for? And is Dwight Howard LA bound? Hear that and more with SI’s Chris Mannix on The DA Show!