We are on part three of our four-part Boston Celtics TPE series.
The C’s acquired a $9.7 million Traded Player Exception from the Tristan Thompson deal over the summer. A bigger amount of moolah to spend means bigger fish to catch.
More options could mean another piece to put Boston over the top in a wide-open Eastern Conference race.
Let’s go over some of the basic misunderstandings surrounding these underrated assets.
An important fact is that these exceptions are on a ticking clock pending expiration. Brad Stevens has exactly a year from the date he acquired these TPEs to use them or lose them.
Losing the smaller ones may not impact the C’s all much, but the bigger ones could come back to haunt this franchise — something nobody on the Celtics brass wants.
Basically, these can be used before the NBA trade deadline on February 10th or during this coming offseason.
There is no in-between area or after-the-fact scenario.
Will our front office and ownership value the chance to go all in to win now or opt for staying under the tax to have financial flexibility for the future? This just means either doing nothing or putting all our chips in the Bradley Beal basket.
Our 3 targets are as follows: a sweet-shooting and rim-protecting bench big, a true low turnover point guard, and a combo guard that would add a boost to the team’s bench.
Without further introduction, here are 3 specific Boston Celtics trade targets with the Thompson TPE.
Boston Celtics TPE target No. 1) Serge Ibaka
The first target for the Boston Celtics is Clippers big man, Serge Ibaka.
The smooth shooting stretch four has been a longtime coveted prospect for the C’s brass and fans alike.
We all remember, the former NBA champion giving us all types of match-up problems in the bubble during the Celtics-Raptors seven-game Semifinals series.
His ability to stretch the floor with ease and be a consistent bruiser down low has always proven to be a quality attribute within his game.
Ibaka would be a highly useful veteran leader with a winning pedigree, which is something this team is missing. Someone who has been there before when it comes to the NBA Finals and knows what it takes to succeed at that level could be truly beneficial to this still rather useful shamrocks squad.
This season, the big man has seen a more reduced role for the Clips but is still thriving shooting a solid 38 percent from deep.
I personally felt before the C’s signed Tristan Thompson two offseasons ago that it was done as a plan B for missing out on Serge Ibaka.
They were signed to identical contracts.
The 32-year-old shined in the 2019-20 playoffs with Toronto, averaging 14.8 points and 7.7 rebounds per game on 57 percent shooting from the field including a blistering 51 percent shooting clip from beyond the arc.
The Boston Celtics should relish in the opportunity to get this deal done as Serge could fit better alongside Robert Williams than Al Horford or be a deadly addition to our second unit.