The Pelicans made a strong push, but in the end, Monroe is Boston-bound.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:
The Celtics could offer so much because they have a disabled-player exception for Gordon Hayward, whom an NBA-appointed doctor ruled was “substantially more likely than not that” to be unable to play through June 15. If Hayward returns this season, there will be some (maybe legitimate) complaints around the league.
Aron Baynes and Daniel Theis have exceeded expectations at center for Boston this season, and Al Horford will often play the position in key situations. But Monroe brings offensive skills – interior scoring, passing – Baynes and Theis can’t match. We’ll see how Brad Stevens handles the rotation and tradeoffs with his centers, but it’s nice to have another option.
For New Orleans, this leaves Anthony Davis at center for the time-being with newly acquired Nikola Mirotic at power forward. Davis seemingly would prefer to play power forward, so – with DeMarcus Cousins out – expect the Pelicans to keep looking for a center. But after trading a first-round pick for Mirotic, New Orleans probably doesn’t have the assets to get someone better than Monroe. This was a big miss, perhaps one that swings the Pelicans’ playoff fortunes.