Grade the Trade: Boston Celtics proposal swaps Jaylen Brown for All-NBA guard

Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /

One of the main Boston Celtics storylines throughout the course of 2023 has been Jaylen Brown and his $304 million contract extension. Brown’s extension dominated the internet in the days following its announcement.

It was a deal that split Celtics fans, with some believing it was worth the money to lock the All-NBA forward down for another five years. Others haven’t been quite as excited, even calling it a bad contract.

Well, Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley recently published an article, which proposed a trade for every team’s “worst contract.” When it came to Boston, Brown was the man on the trading block. Buckley’s proposal looked like this:

Should the Boston Celtics trade Jaylen Brown for Donovan Mitchell?

No. But Mitchell is probably the best return they could get.

First things first, Brown isn’t even eligible to be traded until January. Even when he becomes eligible, the Celtics should be in no rush to offload him.

The 26-year-old has spent his entire seven-year NBA career in Boston and has helped the team string together a run of sustained success.

Last season, he was named to his first-ever All-NBA team, earning a selection to the third team. He put together a monster year, averaging 26.6 points, 6.9 rebounds, and 3.5 rebounds per game while shooting 49.1% from the field and 33.5% from beyond the arc.

Sure, he was dreadful in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Miami Heat, but it’s pretty unfair for fans’ judgment to be clouded by that one round.

Prior to that series, he had been averaging about 24 points per game on efficient shooting splits.

As for Mitchell, he’s pretty comparable to Brown. He also made his first All-NBA team last year, being named to the second team.

His scoring average was slightly better than Brown’s at 28.8 points per game. He was more efficient from beyond the arc too, knocking down 38.8% of his attempts.

Final grade for Boston Celtics-Cleveland Cavaliers trade: C-

The trade would be far more intriguing if it was a straight swap. However, with Boston having to include Pritchard as well as a first-rounder, it just wouldn’t be worth it.

With Marcus Smart’s departure this summer, Pritchard could be poised for a larger role off of the bench. Anytime he’s gotten an opportunity in the past he’s thrived in it.

As for the pick, does it really make sense to trade away an asset like that in a salary dump? Isn’t the whole purpose to avoid paying penalties with the new CBA? One of the best ways to accumulate cheap talent is through the draft, so giving up a pick here would be a poor decision.