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Danny Ainge Is Looking To Make The Boston Celtics Great

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Celtics Team President Danny Ainge Is Looking To Make The Boston Celtics Great, Not Good

The Boston Celtics are a good basketball team, not a great one. They achieved alot in a 53-win season that saw them atop the Eastern Conference standings only to get obliterated by an elite Cleveland Cavaliers team. Team President Danny Ainge understands it take a great squad to win championships, and that this current team is not that.

So when Ainge comes out and talks about this, one can assume a lot is to come for this Boston Celtics franchise.

“I know that we’re good. I know that we’re not great,” Ainge, whose Celtics squad made a five-win improvement, from 48 wins in 2016 to 53 wins this year, said. “I know that we still have more to do, and, you know, that next step is by far the hardest.”

The current Celtic core is led by players like Al Horford and Isaiah Thomas, but after them there is a steep drop off. Sure an Avery Bradley or a Marcus Smart is a nice complimentary pieces, but when Jae Crowder is your starting small forward you are going to run into problems when you face LeBron James. Trader Danny illustrated the concept of having good players, but not great players.

“We have a lot of good players,” Ainge noted, “but we need some great ones.”

The names of worth when looking into acquisitions are headlined by similar names that have been spewed the last several months. You have unrestricted forward Gordon Hayward who played for Brad Stevens at Butler. Then in the trade hunt you have players such as forward Paul George and guard Jimmy Butler. Or in the pipedream realm you have trade ideas for Anthony Davis or Blake Griffin.

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Celtics Have A Full Roster With Not Alot Of Minutes Up For Grabs At The Moment

The Boston Celtics have nine players under contract for next season (10 if they exercise a team option on Jordan Mickey), and there’s simply not enough room for the Celtics to make an impactful addition without freeing up some of the minutes logged by those nine players. The Celtics also have just one more year before guys like Thomas, Avery Bradley, and Marcus Smart get significant raises, which could be in Boston or elsewhere. The current contracts and expiring deals are ones that Ainge knows he has to juggle.

“We have a lot of players. We have a lot of depth, and we have guys that want to play, that deserve to play. And I don’t think our roster is as balanced as it needs to be,” said Danny Ainge. “So, yes, we have a lot of very difficult decisions. And there will be difficult decisions in free agency and who to allocate the money to, difficult decisions in the draft, difficult decisions with opportunities to make trades — no different than trade deadline times.”

If the Celtics do indeed trade for a Butler or a George, it would likely take the 18 Brooklyn pick and in addition you would try and attach Crowder in that as well to free up minutes. Also if they use the number 1 pick on Fultz they will have to free time up on guard, which could mean they would trade one of their current expiring guards for a rebounder which they could also use.

For Danny Ainge though all of this is easier said then done.

“Just because you’re one piece away doesn’t mean you can get it,” Ainge admitted. “And if you force yourself to get it, and if you force a deal or force yourself to get the second-best available or the third- or fourth-best available player at that position that you need, then it might not make you that much better or make you still not good enough, and you’re stuck.

The Celtics have the luxury of being in a very nice position with an already solid roster and an arsenal of draft picks and sizable cap room to add another max contract this offseason. The options are plentiful and franchise altering, but the chances of a Celtics banner in the next five years looks good.

Tanner founded Trifecta Network in Spring of 2016 and has been the Chief of Content for the Network since that time. Currently Tanner covers all the sports teams in Boston and has contacts in many of the teams in the city. Before starting Trifecta, Tanner was a Site Expert for the FanSided site Chowder and Champions before leaving to cover Boston teams on the ground as a member of the media for Trifecta.

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Reviewing Celtics Trade For Irving

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Reviewing Boston Celtics Trade For Irving

The Boston Celtics traded for Kyrie Irving on Tuesday. This trade sent a shockwave through the Celtics fan base and throughout the entire NBA community.

Irving is a 25-year-old point guard with two years left on his deal with the third year being a player option.

In exchange for Irving, the Celtics sent Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic, and the 18 Nets pick to Cleveland. Many will debate if this is indeed a good trade, or even makes the Celtics better.

But in terms of Irving and Isaiah, their stats tell similar stories. But with term left on his deal, a younger age of 4 years, and growth potential, Irving over Thomas is a smart pick in terms of the future.

Losing Crowder isn’t a big deal. Boston already has Gordon Hayward, Jaylen Brown, and Jayson Tatum locked up at that position.

Zizic is still a big man prospect but left a lot to be desired in Celtics Summer League action. The real question here is the Net’s pick. The 18 Brooklyn pick is a reason to be concerned with no restrictions on it. On paper, the Net’s are a better team than they were last year.

But losing the Net’s pick means that Boston has lost their largest trading pick. One could argue Ainge should have included a Tatum or a Brown before the Net’s pick. Because of the Net’s pick, symbolized a potential to land a big man superstar like Anthony Davis.

But when it comes down to it, getting Irving was real, Davis? Not so much.

Ainge made the smart play for the long term on a player that seems committed to staying in Boston. If I were in his shoes, this move is a no brainer. It is easy to get sentimental about Thomas.

IT helped turn Boston into a contender and his personality fit right in. His play style, attitude, and the way Celtics fans showed their love and support for him after losing his sister in the playoffs will go down as one of the most emotional times in Boston sports. By no means should trading Thomas mean that we should degrade him as a player. Thomas is a top 5 guard in the NBA, an all-star, and an MVP type player.

But when it comes to sports, business is king.

Thank you IT.

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Boston Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas stands by himself during team introductions before a first-round NBA playoff basketball game against the Chicago Bulls Sunday, April 16, 2017, in Boston. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

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Danny Ainge Addresses Trade For Irving

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Boston Celtics

Danny Ainge Addresses Trade For Irving

Late Tuesday night, Danny Ainge addressed the media with a fiscally callous tone. On this conference call, Ainge expanded on the complicated circumstances regarding the acquisition of superstar Kyrie Irving. There was a certain steady melancholy to Ainge’s voice that betrayed the truth. This was not an easy trade to make for the veteran Celtics general manager.

Isaiah Thomas (the little guy), Jae Crowder and Ante Zizic now play for the Cleveland Cavaliers. And barring a trade so does the Nets 1st round selection in the 2018 draft. Ainge stammered when trying to communicate the misgivings he had with trading those players. But it was a well-weighted decision. He added, “at the same time we got one of the best offensive players in the league.”

Certainly, letting go of a franchise-face like Isaiah Thomas is a recalcitrant option to flesh out in the war room. Celtics management really ruminated on the trade proposal, before pulling the trigger.

Danny Ainge disclosed to the media members on the conference call that “this deal was not available a month ago.” According to the Celtics GM, the C’s had been in deliberations with the Cavaliers for quite a while. It’s safe to conjecture that the two teams had been aggressively spitballing with each other for the nearly the entire offseason.

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Sully Is Back To Give His Take On The Irving Trade

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