The Boston Celtics needed to shake things up after falling to the Miami Heat in the conference finals, but few expected them to trade Marcus Smart. The 6’3 guard was the heart and soul of the team. Boston wanted Kristaps Porzingis, and trading Smart was the only way to do it after a three-team deal involving Malcolm Brogdon fell through.
The Celtics are all-in on winning their 18th championship. They lost in the NBA Finals in 2022 and have reached the conference five times in the last seven years. Boston is close, and it will take Kristaps Porzingis maximizing his potential to get over the hump.
There could be more trades to maximize their roster, but who is off-limits? Jayson Tatum is their unquestioned superstar and one of the best players in the world. He is not leaving Boston anytime soon, but should the Celtics have other options they won’t discuss in trades? Other players are just too valuable in what they do to be on the block.
Untouchable Boston Celtics not named Jayson Tatum
3. Kristaps Porzingis
Porzingis is untouchable for now. These situations are always fluid as things change quickly in the NBA. The Celtics were ecstatic to trade for the Unicorn and co-owner Wyc Grousbeck shared his praise for Porzingis (subscription required). The Celtics quickly signed him to a two-year extension that keeps him under contract until 2026.
It has been a rocky start. Porzingis is missing the FIBA World Cup with a foot injury but is expected to be ready for training camp. The 7’3 big man has dealt with a host of injuries during his seven-year NBA career, and the foot issue could be a sign of things to come.
Kristaps Porzingis could be on the trade block before the deadline. Nobody is rooting for that, and it would be Brad Stevens admitting that he made a massive mistake by acquiring the Unicorn.
If KP is what the Boston Celtics envisioned when they traded for him, he will be here to stay for the next three years plus. Porzingis can be impactful on both ends of the floor, but can he help the Celtics win a title? That could be the key to him staying in Boston long-term.