The Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers have been in trade talks since Friday, surrounding the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. Late Saturday night, reports confirmed that the Celtics agreed in principle to trade the first overall pick to the Sixers for the No. 3 pick in this year’s draft, as well as future draft selections including the Los Angeles Lakers’ 2018 first-round pick.
Boston Celtics Agree to Trade No. 1 Overall Pick to Philadelphia 76ers
Events leading up to possible deal
With an eye to acquiring what most call “can’t miss prospect” Markelle Fultz, the 76ers began negotiating with the Celtics on Friday. Fultz was expected to be drafted first overall by the Celtics after fellow draftee Lonzo Ball shunned an opportunity to meet with them. Early Saturday afternoon, Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical tweeted the following;
Sources: The plan's for Markelle Fultz's visit to Philadelphia today to clear way toward finalizing a deal with Boston for No. 1 pick.
Discussions have centered on Sixers sending 2017 No. 3, 2018 Lakers pick, and possibly 2021 1st — including complicated protections. https://t.co/LwswzXyCzf
Deal agreed upon
Late on Saturday night, NBA.com’s David Aldridge tweeted the following:
Trade between Philly and Boston will be finalized on Monday, per source. Sides have agreed. Sixers will get first pick and take Fultz.
Wojnarowski also tweeted:
Sixers needed Fultz workout/meeting to complete deal w/ Celtics and, as expected, sides have deal for No. 1 pick. Trade call planned Monday.
Wojnarowski further stated, “Fultz wouldn’t have gone into a workout with the 76ers (who own the No. 3 pick) without having assurance that a trade was agreed upon.”
According to multiple reports, the Celtics additionally receive a protected 2018 first-round pick from the Los Angeles Lakers.
Aldridge wrote the following: “The Celtics will also get at least one future first-round pick from Philadelphia, believed at present to be the unprotected 2018 first-rounder the 76ers will receive next year from the Lakers, via the Suns, as part of a three-team deal in 2015 between Philly, Milwaukee, and Phoenix. The 76ers got the 2018 first from the Suns in a deal that sent Michael Carter-Williams from Philly to Milwaukee, and guard Brandon Knight from Milwaukee to Phoenix. The Suns had originally acquired the pick from Los Angeles as part of the trade in 2012 that sent Steve Nash to the Lakers.”
What does it all mean? This move indicates that the Celtics are looking to fill a need position, most likely on the wing or in the post. With All-NBA guard Isaiah Thomas returning, drafting Fultz would cause a glut at an already strong position. The Celtics are stocking up assets for a possible move to acquire a star player at the trade deadline.
For the 76ers, drafting Fultz gives them a key piece in their rebuilding efforts. With the return of outstanding rookies Joel Embiid and Dario Saric, Philadelphia’s future looks bright. Also, the 2016 draft’s No. 1 overall pick, Ben Simmons, is returning after a season-long absence. The future is bright for the 76ers organization as the assets acquired by former general manager Sam Hinkie continue to bear fruit.
Following his workout with the 76ers, Fultz spoke with reporters.
“The upside of it would be crazy,” Fultz said. “I’m close to home, so a lot of my family can come out and just show love. This city has great fans.” Fultz is a Maryland native, making Philadelphia one of the closest NBA cities to his home.
Both teams plan to conduct a trade call on Monday with the NBA office. The NBA Draft will take place on Thursday, June 22, at the Barclays Center.