BOSTON (CBS) — The Celtics didn’t lose Evan Fournier for nothing after all. Boston has worked out a sign-and-trade with the New York Knicks, which lands Brad Stevens a new trade exception to work with over the next year.

In the deal, the Celtics send Fournier (who inked a four-year, $78 million deal with the Knicks as a free agent), a 2023 second-round pick and a conditional 2022 second-round pick (and we mean conditional) to New York for cash considerations. It also created a trade exception worth $17.1 million, according to The Boston Globe’s Adam Himmelsbach.

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Maybe Boston’s new president of basketball ops. will have a better time using this trade exception than the last one did. Danny Ainge used the massive TPE that he received from the Gordon Hayward sign-and-trade last season to bring in Fournier at the trade deadline. (The rest of it was used this summer to bring in guard Josh Richardson.) Fournier had some mixed results in Boston, and ended up being just a two-month rental when he signed with New York this offseason.

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Now Celtics fans will get to play the TPE game again, this time with Stevens in charge. The Celtics will have a calendar year to use the exception, which could facilitate the team bringing in another player with a salary up to $17.1 million via trade at next season’s trade deadline or during the offseason. Or the exception could be split up among multiple transactions like the last one.

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However they use it, the Celtics gained a little more flexibility for the future, giving them something in return for Fournier bouncing to join the Knicks. Staff