Report: Boston Celtics remain active in trade talks ahead of NBA draft

By 2023 NBA finals concluded and the Denver Nuggets taking home their first NBA title in franchise history, the offseason is officially all systems go heading into next season. After a stinging defeat in game 7 to Miami heatBoston’s historic comeback fell short, leaving them with an offseason filled with questions.

What will happen to Jaylen Brown’s supermax extension and will he say no? Do the Celtics plan to keep restricted free agent Grant Williams, regardless of the price tag? With the new CBA looming on the horizon, the entire NBA is sure to make moves with future financial implications in mind, and that’s especially true with the Celtics. Per Brian Robb of MassLiveBoston has already been active and is working on the phone lines until 2023 NBA Draft on June 22:

That Celtics may not be in the hunt for big names like Bradley Beal ahead of the 2023 NBA Draft, but that hasn’t stopped Brad Stevens and the rest of Boston’s front office from looking for potential upgrades. A league source tells MassLive that the Celtics have been one of the more active teams in the league in trade negotiations ahead of Thursday’s draft.

That Washington Wizards appears to be finally pulling the trigger on a long-awaited rebuild, and with that, Bradley Beal is returning to trade talks. Of course, Celtics star Jayson Tatum has a well-documented friendship with Beal dating back to their childhood in St. Louis, but there have been no documented reports of Boston’s current interest in trading the longtime wizard. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst has reported that the Celtics aren’t really into Beal and would prefer to keep All-NBA star Jaylen Brown by inking him to a supermax extension this summer. Windhorst had also previously reported that if Brown had been selected All-NBA, he would sign an extension this offseason.

The same cannot be said for some other members of the Celtics, specifically in Boston’s backcourt. It has most recently been reported by The Athletic’s Jay King that Payton Pritchard would ideally be moved this summer in a trade as he seeks a bigger role after being buried on the depth chart behind Derrick White and Malcolm Brogdon. Further fueling the flames, Robb suggested that it might not be Payton Pritchard who has moved because of his smaller contract:

Boston only has the No. 35 overall pick, but the team is looking to make potential adjustments to the supporting cast around Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. The Celtics are especially loaded in the backcourt with Marcus Smart, Derrick White, Malcolm Brogdon and Payton Pritchard all under contract for next season, and the team is looking into moving a guard to improve other areas of the league, according to a league source. Pritchard has been open about his desire for more playing time over the past season in Boston or a new home, but the Celtics could find more financial flexibility to improve other areas of the roster by moving a higher-paid guard like Smart or Brogdon.

After acquiring him from the Indiana Pacers last summer, Malcolm Brogdon was an integral part of the Celtics’ regular season success, earning himself Sixth Man of the Year honors for his efforts as a key cog in Boston’s second unit. However, a torn forearm ligament cost Brogdon dearly in the Eastern Conference Finals, and his impact was significantly diminished during the Celtics series against the Heat. While it was a disappointing playoff run for Brogdon, the former Rookie of the Year proved his impact in winning basketball, which may be why the Celtics are looking to move him right now.

In terms of health, this was by far the healthiest and most productive season Brogdon had under his belt in a long time, even including his ill-timed playoff injury. With a $22.5 million cap hit through 2025 and the new CBA sure to be difficult, Brogdon’s value may never be that high again. After buying low on him last offseason, Boston should look to move Brogdon to increase depth at other spots on the roster while also clearing the way for Payton Pritchard to regain a role. It could also give Derrick White a chance for a bigger role after an outstanding season with the Celtics.

Although it is uncertain whether Brogdon had been mentioned in any conversations, Pistons beat writer James L. Edwards III of The Athletic repeated the same news that the Celtics were active in the trade market. Edwards reported that Boston, as well as other teams, have contacted Detroit about center Isaiah Stewart, but also said the Pistons likely wouldn’t move the rugged big man.

With only a week between the Celtics and draft night, there is sure to be talk that is getting louder and louder around the league.

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