Celtics Reportedly Make Best Free Agent Pitchesby Prime Time Sports Talk February 20, 2018 0 comments
New York is the city that never sleeps. Boston is pretty much closed entirely by 2 a.m. Miami residents enjoy the state of Florida’s lack of income tax, while Massachusetts residents are subjected to one of the top-15 highest state tax burdens in the nation. The average temperature of a winter day in Los Angeles is 68 °F. Meanwhile, this year Boston tied a city record for the longest stretch of sub-20 degree weather, a mark which had stood since 1918.
However, these geographical disadvantages have apparently not stopped the Boston Celtics from becoming one of the NBA’s top franchises in attracting free agent talent, outdoing some of Association’s more appealing locations along the way. Recently a survey conducted by ESPN, which poled 48 anonymous NBA players, found that Boston was seen as having the best free-agent pitches. ESPN reporters asked the players “Which team have you heard makes the best free-agent pitches?” The Celtics received 27 percent of the vote, while the Miami Heat garnered 15 percent, and Los Angeles Lakers placed third with 12 percent.
Boston’s excellence at luring NBA free agents isn’t just conjecture either. All-Star Al Horford agreed to leave the Atlanta Hawks for the Celtics in the summer of 2016. That same offseason, the team was a finalist for former MVP Kevin Durant services as well, before Durant ultimately chose to sign with the Golden State Warriors. However, Celtics’ general manager Danny Ainge rebounded quite nicely this offseason when he landed All-Star in Gordon Hayward, outdoing Miami and Hayward’s former Utah Jazz squad in order to make it happen.
Boston won’t win over any perspective players based on their location. In fact, for Ainge it may even be an obstacle he has to overcome when convincing players to join the Celtics. Basketball reasons are the main, and potentially only, selling point for the Celtics front office. Head coach Brad Stevens is one of the most highly regarded coaches in the league, just five seasons into his NBA career. Players want to play for him because Stevens makes them better, just ask LeBron James.
Ainge’s presence in the organization undoubtedly helps too. His draft record is fine, but it’s his ability to pull off remarkable trades that has been so pivotal to the franchise. Ainge’s Kevin Garnett-Paul Pierce trade with the Brooklyn Nets is one of the NBA’s most lopsided trades of all-time. The swap continues to look even more brilliant by the year as Boston continues to reap the reward of the assets he swiped for two excellent, but well past their prime players. Not to mention the guy brought in via trade Isaiah Thomas for dirt cheap, then flipped him for Kyrie Irving just before Thomas’ value plummeted this season.
Boston’s front office and coaching staff are the creme of the crop in what they do and players around the league have been taking notice. Ainge and Stevens have given the Celtics a stability as a franchise which will continue to lure free agents away from more exciting cities for the chance to play competitive basketball in Boston.
Bringing Tom Brady to help with free agent pitches can’t hurt either.