As of this moment, the Celtics have two first round picks in this summer’s NBA Draft — the 16th and 28th overall selections.
But with the talent level getting more uncertain the deeper on the draft board we go, Boston is reportedly looking to trade those two picks for one in order to move up and have a chance of selecting more of a sure thing.
It’s hardly a secret a slew of teams, including several lottery ones, are exploring potential trades. One team that is making a concerted effort to move into the lottery, league sources claim, is Boston. The Celtics are dangling their two No. 1 picks: Nos. 16 and 28.
Depending on just how high the Celtics are thinking of going, they could also add future draft picks in any potential trade to sweeten the pot — mainly because they’re currently in possession of too many of them.
After this season, the Celtics own the rights to a total of 15 picks over the next two seasons. The reason for stockpiling that many assets wasn’t to use them to bring in a huge crop of rookies in the coming years, it was to package them in trades that could help get some higher-level talent in place more quickly on the roster.
This would appear to be a nice opportunity for that, provided Boston can move up enough to select a player the team truly wants.
LeBron on his late-game steal of Curry’s inbound pass: ‘I knew it was coming’
With 51 seconds remaining in Game 3 of the NBA Finals, and with the Warriors suddenly finding life with Stephen Curry raining ridiculous shots from all over the floor, every possession would count.
LeBron James made sure one of Golden State’s was taken away, and it was all thanks to just how smart he was in the moment.
James jumped the passing lane to come away with a critical steal on an inbound pass from Stephen Curry, and was immediately fouled. He pointed to his temple and smiled on his way back up the court, telling everyone he’d seen what was about to unfold.
“I just seen them run that set before, and I was telling the coaching staff that I was in tune and I knew it was coming,” James said of the play afterward.
Whether due to extensive film study or just remembering a play the Warriors had run in this series, LeBron was ready.
Warriors remain favorites to win the title despite trailing Cavaliers 2-1 in NBA Finals
The Warriors were significantly favorited by oddsmakers to win the championship heading into their Finals matchup against the Cavaliers, and even though they now trail two games to one in the series following Tuesday night’s Game 3 loss, Vegas still sees Golden State as having the best chance to come away with this year’s title.
From Jeff Sherman of the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook:
NBA Finals Game 4 Thursday, June 11 Warriors -2.5 Cavaliers 193.5 NBA Title odds Cavaliers Even Warriors -120
The margin by which the Warriors are favored has dipped, but it’s at least mildly surprising they remain the team predicted to win while trailing in the series.
The reason, perhaps, is that these games have all been so close. Games 1 and 2 could have gone either way, and despite falling behind by as many as 20 points in Game 3, Golden State had come back to cut it to one on a three from Stephen Curry with 2:45 left.
And, the reality remains that should the Warriors find a way to win Game 4, the series would be tied at two games apiece with two of the final three being played at Oracle Arena. If that scenario should unfold, you’d have to like their chances.
But the way LeBron James has his Cavaliers playing, I wouldn’t be willing to bet on it.