It's the NBA offseason, baby! The 2022 offseason started off with a bang, as one of the biggest stars in the league requested a trade. Kevin Durant (yes, THAT Kevin Durant), has requested a trade out of Brooklyn. Many teams in the running for his services, including the perennial candidates for a star: the Boston Celtics.
For the better part of this decade, the Celtics have always somehow been involved in many trade rumors with star players. Part of that is because of their personnel: they have two exciting young wings in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown that also serve as juicy trade assets. Now, with a future Hall of Famer available, should the Cs finally pull the plug on the J&J experiment?
If the Celtics do decide that Kevin Durant is worth gunning for, here's the best trade offer that they can give to the Nets.
The perfect trade Celtics must offer Nets for Kevin Durant
Boston receives: Kevin Durant
Brooklyn receives: Jaylen Brown, Grant Williams, Aaron Nesmith, 2023 FRP, 2025 FRP, 2024 pick swap
Let's rip the band-aid off: any Kevin Durant to Celtics trade will involve one of the Jays. Brown and Tatum are the two highest-paid players on the roster, and also the most appealing trade assets. There's no realistic way that the Cs add Kevin Durant to a team that has both Brown and Tatum.
Okay, with that out of the way, let's discuss this deal. The Celtics are likely never going to give up Jayson Tatum in a potential Kevin Durant trade. Tatum has grown significantly in his last few years, and he's developed into a borderline superstar. There's also the fact that Tatum hasn't been involved in serious trade rumors, while Brown's name has been floating around for a long time now.
Still, though, that doesn't mean that the Nets are getting a worse player in Jaylen Brown in this trade. The Celtics star is a perfect complement to his former teammate Kyrie Irving in Brooklyn. Brown's length and defensive talent allows him to take unfavorable guard matchups for Irving. Plus, his scoring chops will help buoy the Nets' bench unit when Irving rests.
Grant Williams and Aaron Nesmith are included as salary filler, but that doesn't mean the two are dead weight for the team. In fact, both players could actively help their new team in this instance! Both players are solid to great defenders that can also shoot the ball from deep. Their presence will be a huge boon for a Nets roster that was light on perimeter defense last season.
As for the Celtics, well, they'll get arguably the most lethal isolation scorer in the NBA today in Kevin Durant. The Nets star proved that he can still hang with the best of the best despite tearing his Achilles tendon. He's a clear upgrade for the Cs, despite not necessarily addressing any of their weaknesses from last season.
Will the Celtics pull the trigger on this trade? Well, it depends on general manager Brad Stevens' plan for the future. Is he looking to build a dynasty from the ground up? Or is he willing to risk it all for a few years of title contention? If his plan is similar to the latter, then rest assured that the Cs will do everything they can to acquire Durant.
Boston's last general manager, Danny Ainge, never did give the green light to go for a major trade involving the Jays. With a new man at the helm, have their ideologies changed? Are they going to take a massive risk and trade one of their young pieces for an established star?