The Boston Celtics might not achieve their presumed dream scenario this summer, but that doesn’t mean it won’t come to fruition elsewhere.
It’s long felt like the Celtics were angling to pair Kyrie Irving with Anthony Davis, who requested a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans back in January. But those plans now appear in jeopardy as rumors swirl that Irving will sign elsewhere this offseason, and another team — like, say, the Brooklyn Nets — theoretically could take a page out of Boston’s book in the hopes of building a legitimate NBA Finals contender.
Jay Williams wondered Wednesday on ESPN’s “Get Up!” whether the Nets could sign Irving, who’s been heavily linked to Brooklyn in recent weeks, and trade for Davis. The Nets have several assets, including All-Star point guard D’Angelo Russell, that New Orleans might find attractive.
Williams then took things a step further by suggesting the Nets also could pursue Kevin Durant, who can opt out of his contract with the Golden State Warriors and become a free agent this summer. That would give Brooklyn an insane three-headed monster capable of turning Boston’s “dream scenario” into a total nightmare, all things considered.
“There is an interesting play when you think about Kyrie Irving potentially going to Brooklyn,” Williams said. “When you think about the assets that Brooklyn actually has, and (Nets general manager) Sean Marks has done a really good job of acquiring assets. Imagine this: Imagine if Brooklyn were to use (D’Angelo Russell) as trading bait. You also have Spencer Dinwiddie, you have Caris LeVert, you have Jarrett Allen — potentially working with (Pelicans executive vice president of basketball operations) David Griffin to get a trade to potentially get Anthony Davis to Brooklyn with those assets.
“Imagine the Brooklyn Nets potentially next year with Anthony Davis and Kyrie, and potentially still having the chance to get Kevin Durant. Talk about tilting the Eastern Conference. That’s a championship team right away.”
Not only would the Celtics have to somehow mitigate the loss of Irving, who’s one of the NBA’s most talented players despite his shaky two-year tenure with Boston. They’d also have to deal with a new Eastern Conference powerhouse, perhaps closing their own NBA Finals window, and the sour taste of never acquiring either Davis or Durant, both of whom Boston targeted in recent years.
Of course, an Irving-Davis-Durant trio in Brooklyn seems like a long shot, if only because there are so many moving parts involved. It’s not impossible, though, and the sheer idea should be enough to make the Celtics shudder.
Suddenly, the 2013 trade sending Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett from Boston to Brooklyn would be much easier for the Nets to forget.
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