With the 2021-22 NBA season underway, Boston Celtics fans are already looking for ways to improve after a razor-thin double overtime 138-134 loss to the New York Knicks this past Wednesday.
The loss came without presumable starting power forward Al Horford, who was a DNP due to COVID-19 protocols.
In MassLive’s Boston Celtics Mailbag, one fan threw out a name that could overtake Horford in the starting lineup: Sacramento Kings big man Marvin Bagley.
Here was Cs fan Brady’s idea to swap a wing–which is the deepest position on the Celtics roster–for the seven-footer drafted #2 in the 2018 NBA Draft:
"Would you trade Josh Richardson for a Marvin Bagley-type player? Romeo and Nesmith should make fairly significant jumps this season based on preseason. assuming Ime wants Horford to start alongside rob when he comes back, our big man rotation is pretty slim. Bagley would give us a capable scoring big man who still is improving."
Richardson was traded for and then promptly had his contract extended by new President of Basketball Operations Brad Stevens. While it was fair to expect Richardson to play big minutes and potentially even start after that, he wasn’t featured in the offseason and missed the season opener altogether with a migraine.
He could debut tonight, but anything short of strong production could have Richardson’s name involved in trade talks because his salary is one of the few that alone could return an impact player that already got a raise from their rookie deal.
As for this proposal, MassLive’s Brian Robb wasn’t quite sold on Bagley yet:
"Bagley’s defensive struggles give me pause from pulling a trigger on moving a veteran wing for him in Richardson. A wing who can switch like Richardson defensively is a far more valuable commodity right now than a big like Bagley who hasn’t been able to break into the rotation this year for a bad Kings team."
Bagley wasn’t part of the Kings’ rotation during their 124-121 opening night win over the Portland Trailblazers. Harrison Barnes started at the 4 and dropped 36 points and grabbed nine rebounds in his stead.
If Sacramento sees the Barnes-Maurice Harkless duo as the answer in the frontcourt alongside center Richaun Holmes, perhaps Bagley won’t be long for California’s capital city.
Richardson and draft consideration could be Boston’s ticket to bringing Bagley into the fold if Stevens decides to go that route.