3. Matisse Thybulle
The Celtics have the best defensive backcourt in the NBA in Derrick White and Jrue Holiday. Both were on the All-Defensive teams last season, and nobody looks forward to facing Boston. Zach Lowe floated the idea of the franchise picking up a third elite defender.
Thybulle signed a three-year $33 million contract with the Mavericks in the offseason, but the Blazers matched it in restricted free agency. He cannot be traded to Dallas, but the 6’5 wing could be on the move before the deadline. Portland is just starting a rebuild, and Thybulle is only playing 23.8 minutes per game.
He has made two All-Defensive teams in his first four NBA seasons. The 26-year-old is comfortable coming off the bench and playing lockdown defense. His offensive game is a work in progress, but Thybulle has shot 36.9 percent from 3-point range over the last two seasons combined.
Matisse Thybulle is making $10.5 million this season, which means Boston would have to trade four bench options to acquire him. This becomes more attractive if the Celtics find someone they desire on the buyout market, but their spending limits them to someone making the non-taxpayer mid-level or under before being waived. This would be a gamble, but one that makes them an elite defensive team.