"Outside the Lines", 1.10/Photo: Walla Studio!. Video Editing: Ziv Steiner
Another major trade was completed Sunday night in the NBA. After seeing their biggest rival in the East (at least on paper) Milwaukee arm themselves with Damian Lillard, Boston decided to take action and added former Bucks point guard Jrue Holiday, who of course was involved in the huge trade for the Portland star but had not yet landed in Oregon.
Those who traded to the Blazers in exchange were Robert Williams, Malcolm Brogdon and two first-round picks. According to reports in the United States, Portland demanded 4-5 first-round picks in each Holiday deal from the many teams that evacuated, but Williams' inclusion in the deal changed things. The Celtics, it seems, aren't done yet: "The fact that they've completed the move now means they're planning a few more moves," tweeted journalist Brian Rove.
"The race for the Eastern Conference championship has become much more interesting over the past four days," ESPN wrote. "Holiday fits Boston's roster perfectly, he's an upgrade on Marcus Smart and with him, the Celtics may have the best top six in the league. They seem to be the favorites to win the East, maybe even a championship." Skype Bayless agreed ("The Celtics are favorites. It's more fun to watch Diem, but Jrue is a more important player") and so are bookmakers – Joe Mazzulla's team became the frontrunner, overtaking Milwaukee in the round.
The problem, it seems, is the bench, as ESPN noted: "The depth looks very shaky, after giving up two rotation players. Those who will have to fill in the blanks are Sam Hauser, Peyton Pritchard, O'Shea Brissett, Luke Cornet and my grandfather Mikhailchuk. It will be interesting to see if Boston can add another significant player in a trade, they got another draft pick in a trade for Smart."
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Holiday will become a free agent next summer, but Boston will try to keep him. "They gave up too many things to make it just a one-season rental," ESPN wrote. Similar things are hard to say about Brogdon, who is expected to be involved in another trade as Portland has a young back line and would be interested in more draft picks.
CJ McCollum, who knows Damian Lillard well, responded to the huge trade and the fact that the superstar ended up landing in Milwaukee, not Miami as he wanted. "With all due respect to Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, Giannis is a completely different story," the New Orleans player said. "There's no other player in the league who dominates like him. Damian always said he wanted to win a championship, but now he's in a better situation. He'll play with the best player in the league and I'm very happy for him."
- More on the subject:
- Boston Celtics
- Jrue Holiday
- Portland Blazers