NBA Rumors: Has Isaiah Thomas’ Emergence Cooled Celtics’ Jimmy Butler Interest?

The Boston Celtics reportedly have interest in Jimmy Butler, an NBA All-Star who can score from just about anywhere on the floor and isn’t afraid to take a big shot in crunch time.

Wait, doesn’t that sound kind of familiar?

The emergence of Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas as one of the NBA’s best scorers has been one of the more interesting Green-related storylines this season, and Thomas’ superb play apparently might be enough to convince Boston not to make a deadline push for Butler.

“The Celtics have reservations, according to league sources, about adding Butler after how wonderfully the Isaiah Thomas emergence has gone,” Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding wrote Tuesday. “There is valid reason for concern, because Thomas is reveling in his top-dog status.”

It certainly is an interesting thought. If the Bulls do decide to deal Butler — which is still a big if — he wouldn’t come cheap. The Celtics have some of the NBA’s best trade chips, including the right to swap first-round picks with Brooklyn this season, a pick that ultimately could end up as No. 1 in a loaded draft. Boston also has Brooklyn’s first-round pick next season, another potential top-four selection.

The C’s have young talent and a core that’s about ready to at least contend for the conference title with Thomas solidifying himself as the team leader. Acquiring Butler also could mean breaking up that core to facilitate the trade. Then again, pairing a player like Butler with Thomas and forward Al Horford might be enough to put Boston over the top.

Or, this all could be posturing out of Boston’s camp in an attempt to limit its perceived interest in Butler with hopes of driving down the price.

Regardless, the lead-up to Thursday’s NBA trade deadline figures to be fascinating.

Thumbnail photo via Dennis Wierzbicki/USA TODAY Sports Images

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