The deadline to deal or buyout Paul Pierce’s contract for just about $5 million is coming up fast. The Celtics have very little time between now and the 30th to figure out what to do.
It seems that the Celtics are trying to find a team that can absorb Pierce’s full salary. If they can find such a team, they’ll get a $15.3 million trade exception back. According to Sean Deveny of The Sporting News, the Celtics are looking to use that trade exception to make a deal for Josh Smith.
In order to land Smith, though, the Celtics need to pull off a deal for Pierce that will net them a trade exception. Because teams over the salary cap can’t take on salary without sending back matching salaries, Boston’s options are limited to teams under the cap. That’s why two teams that have been connected to a Pierce deal have been Cleveland and Milwaukee.