Boston Celtics: Jaylen Brown traded to Atlanta Hawks in SI mock deal

Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown traded to Hawks in SI mock deal Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown traded to Hawks in SI mock deal Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /

With the losses piling up for the Boston Celtics already in 2022–in tragic fashion two nights in a row, no less–the mock trade winds are starting to blow fiercely in the direction of New England’s flagship city.

The Houdini has had a pretty straightforward approach to our trade conjecture: outside of a too-good-to-be-true scenario, Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum are off-limits. Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations Brad Stevens operates under this assumption too.

Remember, though, we are Celtics-centric. Not everybody else is, so sometimes other teams get to wildly benefit from trades involving the Cs.

Take the Atlanta Hawks who, in Sports Illustrated staff writer Michael Pina’s latest mock, steals Jaylen Brown in a blockbuster swap featuring three role players and a couple of first-round picks:

"A wave of injuries and COVID-related absences are undeniable, but consistency has eluded both clubs even when their main pieces are together. There’s a real chance neither makes the playoffs, and if they end this season stuck in mud a blockbuster deal may be necessary. Here’s one that will tempt both sides:The Hawks get Jaylen Brown. The Celtics get De’Andre Hunter, Kevin Huerter, Jalen Johnson and two unprotected first-round picks."

Why the Boston Celtics wouldn’t do this

Chris Forsberg believes that as Brad Stevens dives head first into the trade market in the next month, the ‘Jays’ should be involved in the process:

"No one in the organization wants to punt on any season in which Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown are healthy. But Stevens can ease any concerns by stressing the benefits of a future focus and asking for input from his pillars on what sort of player they should be trying to add."

Most media outlets in Massachusetts see Brown as untouchable in trade talks. After Ben Simmons chatter sprouted this past November, Stevens assured Brown that he wouldn’t be going anywhere.

So why would that change with the Cs 3.5 games behind the #6 seed in the Eastern Conference? Even a small run of victories could get them back in the thick of things in the east’s postseason picture. The right move at the deadline could have them talking top-four seed in the conference.

This Celtics team has the two necessary stars to win. What’s around them isn’t cutting it. Dennis Schroder, Josh Richardson, and Al Horford are the likeliest guys to be dealt at the deadline. Not Brown.

Especially not for a package that is headlined by two players with a third-option ceiling (Kevin Huerter, De’Andre Hunter) and a completely unproven commodity in Jalen Johnson. The draft picks are nice, but there’s no guarantee that who those players turn into, or the three aforementioned trade pieces, ever turn into anything close to what Brown has become as a leader.

Unless the plan is to eventually trade Jayson Tatum too, the Celtics would most certainly pass on this Hawks offer.

Next. This player is a far more plausible in a Brown swap. dark