BOSTON (CBS) — You can cross Jrue Holiday off the Celtics’ offseason wish list. He’s heading to one of Boston’s Eastern Conference rivals instead.
The Celtics were reportedly discussing trades with the Pelicans for the gifted two-way guard, but the Milwaukee Bucks swooped in to steal him late Monday night. Milwaukee is doing everything it can to make Giannis Antetokounmpo happy and surround him with a better supporting cast, so they traded away a lot of its future to land the Pelicans guard late Monday night.
The Bucks are reportedly sending Eric Bledsoe, George Hill and three first-round picks to New Orleans, along with a pair of pick swaps.
If you think that sounds like a lot, well it is. The deal for Holiday rivals what the Pelicans got from the Los Angeles Lakers for Anthony Davis last season. It’s a massive price tag for Holiday, who has a player option for next season.
But that’s the price the Bucks were willing to pay to get a better group around Giannis, who they hope will sign a five-year supermax with the team in the near future.
Holiday is one of the best defensive guards in the NBA, and he also brings some much-needed shooting help to Milwaukee. He averaged 19.1 points and 6.7 assists for the Pelicans last season. He certainly would have looked good in green, but it’s hard to imagine Danny Ainge besting Milwaukee’s offer.
The Bucks weren’t done after acquiring Holiday, either, working a sign-and-trade with the Sacramento Kings for forward Bogdan Bogdanovic, once again addressing the team’s shootings needs.
The NBA just opened for business on Monday afternoon, and the Milwaukee Bucks fired off a pair of aggressive first shots that solidified themselves as a contender in the Eastern Conference. We’ll see how the Celtics — armed with three first-round picks in Wednesday’s draft as trade bait — react over the next few days.