Since the season started for the Celtics, I’ve been writing follow-ups for most of the games played. One thing I discussed in almost, if not all the articles, was rebounding. I discussed how poor we are at rebounding, especially on the offensive end. This article will be like a follow up to the game, but also asking if it’s finally time to pull the trigger on a trade.
A trade is inevitable at this point. Boston has been rumored to wanting to make a big trade for a long time now, but it’s never happened. It may be time to realize that teams don’t want to give up their superstar(s) for some young, up-and-coming players and some draft picks. Don’t get me wrong; I’m all aboard for a Demarcus Cousins to Boston trade, but it’s just not that likely right now. I think it’s time for fans to start thinking about realistic trade opportunities.
Who would we trade for is the first question. Rebounding is the first issue this team needs to fix. A solid guy that can just rebound the ball, whether it’s in the starting lineup or off te bench is what the Celtics need. The Celtics get outrebounded almost every game, and don’t get me started with all the offensive rebounds we give up. Last night we were outrebounded by 20 by the Pistons. Going up against Andre Drummond never helps, either.
You know it’s an issue when your 6’2 shooting guard is leading the team in rebounds. Al Horford was never an outstanding rebounder, so we can’t put the blame on him for only averaging just over six rebounds a game. Putting a solid rebounder/defender next to Al would be the perfect solution. Al gets to play his natural position at power forward and we can get a big man down low that can do the dirty work.
This all sounds great, but who should the Celtics target? A few candidates include Nerlens Noel, Andrew Bogut, Alexis Ajinca, and Tyson Chandler.
Nerlens Noel seems like the most likely candidate out of the four. He’s young, has tons of potential, is a beast defender, and wants out of Philly. Philadelphia has too many big men, story of the century. Boston has some young guards they can let go of to acquire Noel. Throw in a first round pick in a few years as the cherry on top of the sundae, and we might have a deal. Philly loves their first-round picks, so who says no?
Andrew Bogut is on a one-year deal worth $11 million, a rather cheap contract for a former number one overall pick. Andrew Bogut is more known for his rebounding and defensive presence more than anything. He’s a veteran with championship experience that can mentor the young Celtics’ team and would compliment Al Horford well. He wouldn’t have to score a lot. He wouldn’t even have to score at all to be quite honest. All he’d have to do is rebound and defend, which is all Boston needs right now.
Alexis Ajinca is the definition of a big man. He’s 7’2″ and can rebound and block shots. That’s what Tyler Zeller should be doing. Per 36 minutes he averages ten rebounds and a little under two blocks a game. He’s on a very cheap contract as well, making under $5 million a year through 2019.
Tyson Chandler is the guy I’d want the most personally out of all these guys, maybe besides Nerlens. He’s a veteran leader and was the defensive anchor on the Dallas Mavericks’ championship team. A 34-year-old averaging nearly 12 rebounds a game sounds good to me. He’s not having the best season on the defensive end, but Al Horford has been outstanding defensively this year, so he’d help him out. He’d fix our problems down low and would be another great leader for the young team.
Okay, so we have our big man targets. What else does this team need? Some say we need more shooting, but right now we sit 9th in the league in three-point field goal percentage. I wouldn’t mind making a small trade for a shooter that can come off the bench and light it up, like Doug McDermott, JJ Redick, or someone like CJ Miles, but we have to focus on the bigger issue first. Rebounding is the bigger issue, and that needs to be resolved first. Maybe sometime down the road before the trade deadline we can search for a shooter to help the second unit or hell, maybe even the starting lineup. You never know what kind of tricks Danny Ainge has up his sleeves.
Like I said before, a trade is inevitable at this point. I know management has to be just as upset as the fans are over the rebounding problem on the team. Danny Ainge is anticipating a busy month of December when it comes to trade talk.
Hearing that Boston is looking to make a trade is like a broken record. We keep hearing about it, but it never happens. But I think this time is different. I expect to see a new face or two on the Celtics in the coming months, potentially in the next couple weeks. I just hope that if we do make a trade, it’s the right one and it fixes the issue on this team.