Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Boston Celtics acquire Tyler Zeller & Marcus Thornton

boston celtics trade for tyler zeller and marcus thornton 2014
Welcome to the family!
The Celtics had a $10.3 million trade exception at their disposal.

The Cavaliers were looking to shed salary to accomodate the return of The King.

The Nets tried trading for Jarrett Jack at the February deadline.

It's funny how these things work out, isn't it?

Earlier today, ESPN's Marc Stein reported via Twitter that the Celtics, Nets and Cavaliers have agreed on a deal that ships Tyler Zeller, Marcus Thornton & a 2016 first-round pick to Boston, Jarrett Jack & Sergey Karasev to Brooklyn, and a future second-round pick to Cleveland.

Let's evaluate what the Celtics get in this trade.
  • Tyler Zeller, a young pick-and-pop center who was a No. 17 pick in 2012. His $2.6 million team option for 2014-2015 will likely be picked up. The 7-footer is no go-to guy, but he does provide some depth at center.
  • Marcus Thornton, a well-travelled sparkplug whom the Nets acquired for Jason Terry & Reggie Evans at the February trade deadline. His $8.5 million expiring contract gives the Celtics another chip at the poker table.
  • Cleveland's 2016 first-round pick, which is top-ten protected in 2016, 2017 and 2018, and then becomes unprotected in 2019. 
This trade confirms that GM Danny Ainge is still firmly committed to the game plan. Zeller is a decent big man on a reasonable deal, Thornton's expiring contract makes us more flexible, and the first-rounder is another awesome asset to have in our arsenal.

In case you're keeping score, these are Boston's picks for the next four years:
  • 2015 (First Round) - BOS, LAC, PHI (top-14 protected)
  • 2015 (Second Round) - BOS, SAC (top-55 protected), PHI (if Sixers in lottery)
  • 2016 (First Round) - BOS, BKN, CLE (top-10 protected)
  • 2016 (Second Round) - BOS, MIA
  • 2017 (First Round) - BOS, BKN (right to swap)
  • 2017 (Second Round) - BOS, SAC (top-55 protected)
  • 2018 (First Round) - BOS, BKN
  • 2018 (Second Round) - BOS
Is Ainge gathering assets for a potential Kevin Love deal? Or is he treading water so he can make a splash in 2015? 

Only time will tell.

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