The Boston Celtics just made their first trade of the season. The trade surrounded three teams: the San Antonio Spurs, the Denver Nuggets, and the Celtics. The trade detailed the Celtics acquiring PJ Dozier and Bol Bol from the Nuggets. The team sent center Juancho Hernangomez to San Antonio and Denver received sharpshooter Bryn Forbes.
Boston received two valuable pieces, as one will help clear the team from the luxury tax penalty and the other player could turn into an all-star in the future. This will be Dozier’s second stint with the team, as he played for Boston in the 2018-2019 season. Dozier is out for the season recovering from a torn ACL injury. Boston will have Bird’s right this offseason, but it is hard to see Brad Stevens keeping the injured guard for the following season. Dozier has been a valuable bench piece when healthy in Denver, as he could be valuable in an offseason sign-and-trade to match contracts.
Bol Bol’s Potential
Bol was a great pick-up for this team. They added a potential future all-star to the roster. This preseason, the league witnessed what Bol could provide to a team. A dominant center who doesn’t overpower the defense with strength, but with his agility and fluent ball control. Bol is a Giannis Antetokounmpo type of player, a very raw prospect with incredible intangibles and potential. If given the right workouts and training, Bol would be the perfect star next to Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. On the other hand, Bol is very worrisome to most executives. As his recent trade was voided by the Detroit Pistons due to his failure of passing the physical.
The center would need another foot surgery that will sideline for relatively close to the end of the season. His injury report is something to keep an eye on, many are already thinking he will never be the player everyone projected him to be dealing with a serious foot injury. Although many forget that Philadelphia’s center Joel Embiid dealt with a major foot injury in his first two seasons. This means that the Celtics should not discount the young center. The trade was a low-risk, high reward move, as Bol could be incredible down the road.
In recent news, a Celtic favorite has been rumored to be on the trade block. Center Al Horford could be on the move yet again from Boston. Horford has been having a resurgence in his career during his second stint with the team. Becoming not only a veteran leader but a locker room favorite. Horford has been great this season as he is averaging 10.8 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 3.6 assists per game for Boston. One of the more consistent players on the roster, Stevens views his late resurgence as a chance to acquire more depth.
Trading Vets for Depth
Boston struggles and goes on bad streaks, and the team is looking to fill in a weak bench by trading Horford for pieces. With Horford in his late 30’s, the trade value will not be much as a return. The Atlanta Hawks could be interested in a reunion with Horford, as they are starting to sell their team in order to revamp their roster around Trae Young. In exchange for Horford, the Celtics should target forward Danilo Gallinari and guard Lou Williams. As a rough sketch for a trade, Boston might have to throw a future pick into the deal or use one of their trade exceptions.
This trade would be beneficial for Boston as they get off Horford’s big contract for a cheaper contract in Gallinari’s. The forward has not been spectacular this season in Atlanta but could be rejuvenated if traded to another team. The Celtics could use a shooter from the corner, and a player that can be consistent offensively. Gallinari provides both of those. Williams would be a veteran guard to help the bench as another offensive helper. Williams is not his usual Sixth Man of the Year type of player, but he is still valuable to a playoff team. Adding these two players will increase the offensive powerhouse that the team is severely lacking on the bench.
Atlanta with this trade will take on Horford’s contract, but his veteran leadership and defensive prowess are exactly what the Hawks need. Atlanta needs a veteran that can be efficient on and off the court. Horford will be a great leader for Clint Capela and Young and the perfect tutor for center Onyeka Okongwu.
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Main Image Credit: via the Detriot News