The Boston Celtics are clearly the most loaded team in terms of assets, yet mastermind GM Danny Ainge was unable to land Jimmy Butler or Paul George. The team was the #1 seed in the Eastern conference without either of these players, but in order to begin to become a serious threat to the Cavs they'd need to add superstar talent. Jimmy Butler or Paul George were very much availiable and willing to fill that void. After the acquisition of one of them it'd be easier to lure superstars to their franchise to help build a super team capable of beating the Cavs. Well, many thought the asking price from the Pacers and Bulls would be too high, leaving the Celtics with the choice of mortgaging too many or their assets for just one player. As it turns out the T-Wolves and the Thunder proved this theory to be completely wrong since they both fleeced their respective trading partner.
Before I totally begin to rip into the overly conservative Danny Ainge, let me defend him. I don't think he should've made the Paul George trade. Giving up anything for a one year rental isn't worth it. Paul George wants to go to the Lakers and is going to go to the Lakers after this season. That's why it's still smart of the Thunder to acquire him since they gave up two starters that really had no future with the organization. Celtics would either be giving up valuable players that consistently contribute to this organization or draft picks that would eventually contribute all for a guy to come their to maybe win one or two more playoff games than last year and then leave to your arch nemesis at seasons end. Therefore, trading for Paul George should've never been in the cards for the Celtics, just not worth it for them.
The fact that they didn't trade for Jimmy Butler on draft night boggles my mind. Here's a guy that's under contract, a pretty reasonable contract for that matter, that can help elevate your team immediately, and will help attract valuable free agents. Ainge could've easily offered up one if not two draft picks and a player like Jaylen Brown, Jae Crowder, or Avery Bradley, and they would've ended up with Jimmy Butler and the 15th overall pick. I'm sure Celtics fans would feel a lot more confident with that than the outlook they have on the team right now. Yeah they have a ton of draft picks, but they also have Danny Ainge a notorious bad drafter making these selections. It's going to take awhile for all these picks to develop into formidable NBA players, so the Celtics are looking at a 5 year process. Not really trying to wait that long for my team to develop into something if I'm a Celtics fan, especially after just taking the #1 seed in the East. The only good part about the plan is by the time all the draft picks blossom the Cavs and Warriors super teams will be long gone, so the competition should be a lot easier. You can't build for your future thinking like that, though, look at the T-Wolves right now, they got a new super team in the making, so other teams are making the right moves in attacking this new way of rebuilding. Unfortunately for Celtic fans, Danny Ainge is not, and it's going to be real tough to look back and see how badly he butchered such a great situation. Stop holding onto the assets Danny and actually get something out of them.
Who knows, maybe the Celtics can land some big name free agents, although I really think Danny Ainge is just going to head into this season with the same exact team, except they'll have Jayson Tatum and maybe a new role player. A lot to be excited about in the 2017-18 season if you're a Celtics fans, and by that I mean you have getting knocked out in the Eastern Conference Finals in 5 games if you're lucky enough to make it that far to look forward to.
Are the Celtics wasting a golden opportunity? Am I being to critical of Danny Ainge's performance? Let me know in the comment section what you think.