The Boston Celtics were going to surrender one of their point guards this offseason, but it nearly wasn’t Marcus Smart.

Smart ultimately was traded to the Memphis Grizzles in part of a three-team swap involving the Wizards, but he came very close to avoiding an offseason departure from Boston. In fact, reports suggested that it was Malcolm Brogdon who was supposed to be traded in order for the Celtics to acquire Kristaps Porzingis.

Yet, a last-minute change of heart from the Los Angeles Clippers led to the finalized blockbuster trade that brought Porzingis to Boston.

“(The Clippers) then pivoted to Celtics Sixth Man of the Year Malcolm Brogdon, and were ready to trade (Marcus) Morris, (Amir) Coffey and the draft pick that was later used on (Kobe) Brown to complete the deal,” The Athletic’s Law Murray wrote Tuesday. “But after expressing misgivings with Brogdon’s injury history, the Clippers ran out of time to complete the deal before the Celtics moved on to a three-team trade in which they kept Brogdon and traded Marcus Smart to the Memphis Grizzlies instead.”

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Brogdon, who the Celtics landed last offseason from the Indiana Pacers, settled in with ease, despite taking a backseat in Boston.

Brogdon flourished with flying colors by providing starter-level production while playing a reserve role. He quickly became the chief of Boston’s bench unit, averaging 14.9 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists on 48.4% shooting from the field in 67 games.

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Los Angeles was so undecided about whether or not Brogdon’s health concerns warranted a complete shutdown of interest. However, none of that mattered in the end. The Celtics reportedly shut down trade discussions overall, electing to stand by Brogdon after Boston already surrendered Smart.

In the end, the Clippers’ interest in Brogdon came as no surprise considering their lack of depth at the guard position. And passing up on a chance to snag Brogdon will likely leave Los Angeles aching down the line following consecutive playoff disappointments in failing to win a single round.

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