BOSTON (CBS) — Danny Ainge really wants to morph into that “Trader Danny” persona and bring a superstar to Boston.
Ainge is never afraid to swing a deal, and he’s ready to strike according to The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski on his latest podcast. Boston has a nice collection of young players and enticing draft picks that Ainge can offer up for that star player, but Wojnarowski says there’s an issue with that: The Celtics may be overvaluing those assets.READ MORE: $2,500 Reward Offered For Information After Cat Bound Using Tape, Shot 11 Times With BB Gun
“Boston’s interesting. [They have] some good young players, they have draft picks that they can put in deals and they have some veterans that hold some interest in places,” said Wojnarowski. “I do wonder, sometimes, if Boston might overvalue some of the players they have compared to what the rest of the league sees in them. I think Marcus Smart might be starting to fall into that category. His name has been in some talks previously, and they’ve been pretty careful about who they’d give him up for.”
The Celtics have always been high on their prospects, and if they are indeed overvaluing their assets and can’t find that star player on the trade market, Wojnarowski said they could set their sights on free agency this summer. They struck out on Kevin Durant last offseason but came away with a nice consolation prize in Al Horford, the biggest free agent signing in the franchise’s long history. So if Ainge and the Celtics can’t work out a trade this season, Wojnarowski believes they’ll set their sights on Utah’s Gordon Hayward this summer.READ MORE: NASA Wallops Rocket Launch Now Set For Wednesday Night
Hayward is averaging a career-high 22.9 points per game for the Jazz, and will be an unrestricted free at the end of the season. He played for Brad Stevens at Butler, and that may be enough to convince him to change coasts in the offseason. But he’s also been happy during his six-plus years in Utah, and could opt to remain with the Jazz. The forward’s situation could play into Ainge’s game plan leading up to this season’s trade deadline.
“Boston’s got to keep their eye on that and sort of monitor it and see [if they] can they make a run at him,”Wojnarowski said. “Is he definitely going to re-sign there or might he take a look around in free agency this summer? I think Boston’s got to weigh all that with what kind of a deal they maybe try to get themselves involved with between now and the trade deadline.”
Either way, Celtics trade rumors — and now, free agent rumors for months from now — won’t be going away any time soon.MORE NEWS: WooSox Celebrate Home Opener At New Polar Park In Worcester