As the NBA offseason cycles through, many basketball fans find it hard not to talk about the upcoming Boston Celtics. From trading rising star Avery Bradley and trading the first overall pick, we have just begun on the changes that Danny Ainge and his organization have made.
Gordon Hayward signs with the c’s
Gordon Hayward was one of the biggest free agents available this offseason, and had offers from Miami, Utah and of course, Boston.
However, Boston had something that stood out more than their past legends, Larry Bird, Bill Russell and a franchise with 17 total NBA championships: Head coach Brad Stevens. For those who don’t know the reasoning behind Stevens, Gordon Hayward played for Brad Stevens at Butler University, where Stevens coached in the past.
Right away, that boosted the Celtics’ chances of capturing yet another NBA All-Star.
Days later, Gordon Hayward officially signed with Boston on a four-year, $127,829,970 contract, doubling his recent contract of four years, $62,965,420 with the Utah Jazz.
The only downside of signing the recent All-Star is dealing with the nonexistent cap space. Boston needed to free cap space to sign Hayward to his full contract, which led to Boston trading away Avery Bradley, a beloved player in the eyes of Boston fans.
Boston traded Bradley to the Detroit Pistons, receiving Marcus Morris. Many are against this trade, but don’t forget the fact that Bradley is a free agent next season, who inevitably will ask for more money. This is something the Celtics cannot afford after the signing of Gordon Hayward.
third overall pick: jayson tatum. sf (duke)
The Celtics drafted Jayson Tatum with the third overall pick in the draft.
Arguably the best man in this year’s draft, Jayson Tatum will bring his talents to Boston this upcoming season, bringing nothing but excitement to the organization and fans.
At Duke, Jayson Tatum recorded a total of 488 points, averaging 16.8 points per game as well as 7.3 rebounds per game, and shot nearly 50 percent on field goals in his single season with the Blue Devils. Tatum was ranked No. 3 in the 2016 ESPN Top 100 going into Duke University.
By the looks of the media, it seems like Tatum has already built chemistry with this Celtics roster, especially with Jaylen Brown who was a third overall pick in the NBA Draft two drafts ago. The two stars have referred to themselves as “7/11, always open” indicating their jersey numbers and the fact that they both hold great abilities to create openness on the court and sinking any shot.
Jayson Tatum will be a great attribute to this particular Celtics team. Whatever role Stevens gives him, Tatum will exceed.
In addition to Gordon Hayward and rookie Jayson Tatum, the Celtics welcome Marcus Morris and Aron Baynes to the team, as well as key new players like Shane Larkin, Semi Ojeleye and Ante Zizic.
The Celtics made big moves to create a roster that embarks on winning a NBA championship.
According to ABC News, Celtics president Danny Ainge said “I feel like our team is in better position than last year.”
Not to mention that the Celtics were NBA Eastern Conference finalists last season. The C’s look to change that to NBA East Champions, and even NBA Champions. With these added players, this goal is fully achievable.
How will this be done? Last season, the Celtics finshed 27th out of 30 teams in total rebounds, yet still managed to win the Eastern Conference regular season title. Simply, the Celtics needed more big men.
After one offseason, they have introduced a 6-8 forward in Jayson Tatum, a 7-foot center in Ante Zizic, a 6-10 center inn Aron Baynes and a 6-9 forward in Marcus Morris. These are all solid players with great height.
Mix this height with stars like Isaiah Thomas, Gordon Hayward and Al Horford, and you have a team with full potential to raise Boston’s 18th NBA Championship.
Brad Stevens will have a full roster with complete talent this upcoming season. With the new arrivals and established stars, the Celtics are trending up for next season.