The Celtics were at the right place at the right time, getting the Heat’s 2020 second-round pick in exchange for taking Zoran Dragic and his $1,706,250 salary.
Turns out, the trade was even better for Boston than it appeared.
Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe:
Essentially, the Celtics got a 2020 second-rounder for nothing. They don’t even have to pay Dragic.
There’s even a very slight chance a team claims Dragic on waivers, and Boston could use its cash from Miami as pure profit.
Dragic would have cost the Heat more than his full salary in luxury-tax payments. So, it’s worth it for them to pay a team – in money and a draft pick – to take Dragic offer their hands.
Why did the Celtics still have that cap space?
They hadn’t yet officially completed the David Lee-Gerald Wallace trade. Order of transactions matters. If they had made the Golden State trade already, the Celtics wouldn’t have had space for Dragic. The Warriors, who stand to save a lot of money, didn’t mind waiting.
But with Boston’s cap space used, that trade is now official.
The Boston Celtics announced today that they have acquired forward/center David Lee from the Golden State Warriors in exchange for forward Gerald Wallace and guard/forward Chris Babb.
Babb’s contract is unguaranteed. I expect the Warriors to release him, though the Celtics could have just done that themselves. Maybe Golden State will bring him to training camp.