As currently constituted, the Boston Celtics are well positioned to make another run to the NBA Finals.
They obviously have two bona fide stars leading the charge in Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, who continued building on his MVP-caliber campaign Monday with a 51-point effort in a win over the Charlotte Hornets.
The return of Robert Williams has fortified the frontcourt along with the play of Al Horford, Grant Williams and Luke Kornet. Marcus Smart and Derrick White are succeeding as pivotal guards in the rotation while Malcolm Brogdon has proven to be a difference-maker off the bench.
Even with all Boston already possesses, it might not stop Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens from adding at the NBA trade deadline, which is just over three weeks away on Feb. 9. And former NBA executive turned ESPN analyst Bobby Marks knows what he would do if he was in Stevens’ shoes.
Marks would like to see the Celtics acquire New Orleans Pelicans forward Willy Hernangomez for the price of two non-consequential second-round picks in 2023 and 2029.
Boston doesn’t have any glaring holes, but adding frontcourt depth can be seen as a need given the long injury history of Robert Williams. Hernangomez would be a fit in that regard.
The 6-foot-11 veteran plays exclusively around the basket and is averaging 6.9 points and 4.7 rebounds per game this season. Even though the Pelicans are currently riddled with injuries, he has fallen out of the rotation as he hasn’t played in five out of the last six games.
Hernangomez, whose younger brother, Juancho, played for the Celtics last season and didn’t exactly love his brief tenure in Boston, feels redundant compared to Kornet and not that much of an upgrade, either. Stevens is a big fan of Kornet and could just elect to ride things out with the 7-foot-2 center.
Or Stevens could pursue other options as the Celtics reportedly have interest in a big man on the San Antonio Spurs.
But however Stevens goes about things, addressing the backup center spot might be the final piece missing for a Celtics squad that is the consensus favorite at the moment to claim the NBA title.