Boston Celtics: Dennis Schroder is biggest NBA free agency steal

Boston Celtics (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Boston Celtics (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) /

Those critical of new Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations Brad Stevens’ first free agency performance may be singing a different tune now that Dennis Schroder has signed on the dotted line for a “measly” $5.9 million.

Obviously, that is life-changing money to 99.9999% of the population, but to Schroder, that number represents the German guard betting on himself…and losing a lot of money in the process.

Rumors had Schroder turning down an $84 million contract with the Los Angeles Lakers last season. And look, as appetizing as testing free agency and escaping the shadow of LeBron James sounded, it was a bonehead move even at the time to turn down that much money in this market.

Schroder’s loss is the Boston Celtics’ gain.

Money was doled out, sure, but those mostly went to established stars on teams looking to emulate the Milwaukee Bucks formula of locking up your stars long-term and hoping that showing that level of confidence brings out the best in them.

Stevens just got a player worth 10x what he got him for, and patience was one of the biggest facilitators to that happening. Instead of overspending and spending twice that amount annually on someone like Derrick Rose or 12x that amount overall on Lonzo Ball, Stevens let the market sort itself out and got a 15 point-per-game scorer for the MLE.

And not even the full MLE for non-taxpaying teams. For the same cap figure that the Orlando Magic got a third-string center in Robin Lopez, the Boston Celtics just nabbed a legitimate third option and elevated their ceiling in the process.

At worst, Stevens now has a great trade chip if the Schroder-Cs partnership turns sour at any point. If this works out, though, the Eastern Conference may have a new contender in the northeast.

Not a bad first offseason for the new front office all in all.

dark. Next. The good, the bad, and the ugly of the Kanter deal