No, Kevin Garnett was never going to the Clippers. But there were plenty of other potential deals in the works for the Celtics last season, and some of them could still happen.
Greg Dickerson of Comcast Sportsnet reports that the Celtics tried to make a deal for Utah’s Paul Millsap “and or” Al Jefferson at the trade deadline. Both big men would have been helpful upgrades for the Celtics, who struggled in the post whenever Garnett was not in the game, especially after rookie Jared Sullinger was lost for the rest of the season with a back injury.
Just because president of basketball operations Danny Ainge didn’t reel in Millsap or Jefferson last year doesn’t mean it can’t happen going forward. ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan says getting one of them could be in the Celtics’ plans, especially if Boston tries to move Paul Pierce partway through the season. The Celtics still need help down low.
“We all know they love Paul Millsap,” MacMullan said on Comcast Sportsnet on Thursday night. “We all know that. Can they put together a sign-and-trade package? Can they sign him outright, can they clear enough money? I don’t think so. But we also know that Al Jefferson is out there. Do they take Al Jefferson back, who’s not going to be as coveted as Paul Millsap for obvious reasons, injury history, and so on. Is that plausible?”
Millsap averaged 14.6 points, 7.1 rebounds and 1.0 blocks for Utah last year, while Jefferson had 17.8 points, 9.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocks a game. Jefferson started his career and played three years in Boston.