The Boston Celtics are finalizing a trade to send Avery Bradley to Detroit, league sources tell ESPN.
Boston Celtics Trade Avery Bradley to Detroit Pistons
For the Celtics, they had to start moving players in order to create room to sign Gordon Hayward to a max contract. While it was expected that Marcus Smart or Jae Crowder would be traded first, Bradley is headed for free agency next summer and would be the most expensive to keep. He had spent his entire career with the Celtics up until now.
The Pistons are getting a solid player in Bradley. He is an elite shooter who brings toughness and is one of the best perimeter defenders in the league. Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy has been looking for a player like Bradley, and he has him now. It should be an easy fit for Bradley and the Pistons.
The Focus for the Pistons
Now that the Pistons have Bradley, the focus is now on Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. He is currently a restricted free agent and is expected to receive a near-max or max contract offer sheet. The Pistons have been hesitant about matching the contract. But with Bradley now in the mix, they do not have to worry about matching the deal and can let Caldwell-Pope walk. For right now, it is cheaper to have Bradley on the team. He will be expecting a big contract next summer.
The Celtics Rebounding Needs
With the Celtics losing Kelly Olynyk to the Miami Heat, they were looking for another versatile big. Morris fits the need and is also on a cap-friendly deal. He can play both forward positions and will help on the defensive end. The Celtics will need to focus their attention on rebounding. It was one of their biggest flaws last season, and they have not made any moves to help fix the problem yet. Look for them to start searching for players who can rebound and be a rim protector.
Overall, the trade works out for both teams. The Pistons were looking for a consistent two-way guard while the Celtics were trying to create space to complete the Hayward signing.