Kevin Durant For Jaylen Brown? Celtics Should Steer Clear Of Blockbuster

It would be a gutsy move to say the very least


Feb 6, 2023

Welp, here we go again.

The Brooklyn Nets have once again reached a major crossroads, and future of superstar Kevin Durant is up in the air. It took no time at all for the Boston Celtics to be named as a potential landing spot if Durant tries to pull a Kyrie Irving and force his way out of Brooklyn.

Irving is off to the Dallas Mavericks, and uncertainty abounds for Brooklyn. There’s still talent there, buoyed by Durant, who is having another sensational season. But the Nets are less talented without Irving in the short term, and they faced a tough road in the Eastern Conference behind the likes of Boston, Milwaukee and Philadelphia.

So, it would certainly make sense to tear it all down and flip Durant before the deadline to jump-start the rebuild. Once again, the Celtics are reportedly sniffing around. ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said on Monday that Boston is “making some calls” to their division rival.

“I’m hearing that he’s about, he’s on the verge of potentially being moved. Obviously, we’ve all been speculating that he may be moved,” Smith said Monday on ESPN, as seen in a video shared by ClutchPoints on Twitter. ” … I’m hearing Boston is making some calls. Keep your eye on that — Jaylen Brown. Keep your eye on that.”

We’ve been down this road before. It sure seemed like Boston and Brooklyn were making progress on the superstar swap in the summer. Cooler heads prevailed in Brooklyn — the Nets seemingly called Durant’s bluff — and gave it one more go. Obviously, that hasn’t worked out.

The Celtics, on the other hand, have been what everyone expected: title contenders. And there is a world in which they could trade a young star like Brown for Durant, a future Hall of Famer, and it works out as planned. Durant could come to Boston, he could be rejuvenated to play for an organization of adults alongside Jayson Tatum, an MVP candidate.

From the outside looking in, though, there’s simply too much risk for this sort of deal in the middle of the season. The Celtics literally have been the NBA’s best team all season long. They are the title favorites. They have no excuse to not be playing in the NBA Finals come June with the roster they currently have.

Do they really want to upset that? Despite questions about Joe Mazzulla’s ability to lead an NBA team, the interim head coach has handled himself well enough. The thing hasn’t nose-dived. He’ll be a question mark when the playoffs roll around, but on-court talent ultimately wins out.

The Celtics without Durant have the talent to win an NBA championship. They came close last year and have returned arguably the same team, with a roster that is perhaps slightly improved. Is that chemistry really worth upsetting to take on a player, even one with the all-world talent possessed by Durant? And for all of Mazzulla’s success so far, a bona fide superstar with Durant’s cache is one more potentially combustible element for him to deal with.

Not to mention: Is it really worth upsetting what the Celtics have built with Brown and Tatum?

It would be a bold move for Brad Stevens and the Celtics front office. Maybe Durant finally makes it to Boston, and he is the true difference-maker. But this is the Celtics’ best chance to win a title in a decade, and they can do it with what they already have. Staying the course, especially this far into the season, is not just the safe option, it’s still the best option.

Thumbnail photo via Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports Images
Boston Celtics forward Jaylen Brown
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