NBA Draft

NBA Rumors: Trade Deadline Preview

Scotto: The Boston Celtics have expressed interest in re-acquiring forward Jeff Green, league sources told HoopsHype. Green was coached by Brad Stevens in Boston. I’ve also heard former lottery pick Aaron Nesmith and guard Dennis Schroeder are also available in Boston. They’ve made several calls doing due diligence, including to Phoenix regarding Jalen Smith’s availability. 

Gozlan: As we’ve discussed before on this podcast, the Celtics making Schroeder available makes a ton of sense since they’ll have limitations re-signing him this offseason… The possibility that Nesmith might be available has to be a little concerning. He hasn’t progressed from last season and doesn’t have a firm role in the rotation. He hasn’t played since returning from health and safety protocols, so maybe he’s another guy the Celtics look to move to help get below the luxury tax. 

Smith is a guy who made some much-needed progress. He’s made the most of his big minutes in the last few weeks and might be making the Suns regret declining his team option. Smith potentially being a good player now might mean they’re stuck with him through the trade deadline. Since they declined his team option, they’re not allowed to re-sign him to a salary next season that’s more than the amount he was supposed to get on his rookie-scale deal. That would apply to any team that trades for him, so if you’re a team that likes Smith, why would you trade for him? You’d be putting yourself at risk of losing him this offseason if another team offers him more than $4.7 million. 

The most recent case of declined rookie option remorse was when Mario Hezonja played well after the Magic declined him, and the Knicks gave him more than Orlando could offer. If you’re trading for Smith, you’re either taking him purely as salary filler as part of a bigger deal, or you’re betting that his market won’t exceed what you’re allowed to offer him.

Scotto: The Phoenix Suns are so loaded now at center. I haven’t seen a team have this many centers since Vlade Divac was running the Sacramento Kings.

MORE: NBA trade candidates who could be moved after Dec. 15

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