The Celtics were the center of attention all weekend. They fumbled the Pacers deal and there’s no other way to put it. However, I have reason to believe that GM Danny Ainge has already redeemed himself and most Celtics fans are mad for no reason. It’s time for the Boston Celtics free agency update.
Boston had a good draft on Wednesday. They were able to address some of their needs that were extremely lacking in the playoffs last month, I mean, last season. They were not able to draft up which was not ideal but they were able to get some solid talent. I have some high hopes for the incoming rookies to be able to contribute right away.
Keeping Up With the Celtics
Free-agent center Tristan Thompson agreed to a 2-year deal with Boston worth $19 Million according to Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Haynes. Thompson brings a lot more to the table than the Kardashians. Thompson averaged a double-double last season, putting up 12 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 assists. He also adds a veteran presence to the locker room which is something the Celtics need.
Thompson fills an important role for this Celtics team. He is a bigger player than Theis and he can switch on the pick and roll really well. Thompson is entering his 10th season. He will probably come off the bench for Boston. Imagine having Marcus Smart and Tristan Thompson on the floor at the same time. The lob threat would be lethal to defenses across the league. Thompson isn’t a flashy lob finisher by any means but he gets the job done.
Celtics fans are right to be disappointed with the fallout of the Pacers deal, but Danny redeemed himself with this signing. According to Basketball-Reference, Myles Turner averaged 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 1 assist. The numbers are slightly different but the kicker is in their contracts. Turner has 3 more years on his contract at $18 million a year. Tristan Thompson’s contract with the Celtics gives Boston a player at the same position that has better production for a better price. Thompson’s championship experience will certainly help.
Getting T(eague)’d Up
In addition to signing Tristan Thompson, the Celtics were able to add a veteran point guard in Jeff Teague to the squad. Teague is joining the Celtics on a 1-year deal according to Adam Himmelsbach from The Boston Globe. Last season he averaged 13 points, 6 assists, and 2 rebounds in Minnesota before he was traded to Atlanta. There, he averaged 7 points, 4 assists, and 2 rebounds. His role changed with the hawks and his minutes and production reflected that change.
Like Thompson, Teague adds a veteran presence to the Celtics roster. Jeff will help add much-needed bench scoring. Brad Stevens is a known fan of Jeff Teague. He praised Teague in a press conference in 2015 applauding his game, even wanting Teague to play for him when Stevens was at Butler.
Brad Stevens in 2015 (many moons ago): “I think you have to look and redefine who the superstars are with our own eyes every day. … And I don’t know what qualifies as a superstar but I know this: nobody in the league can keep Jeff Teague in front of them. Nobody.”— Jay King (@ByJayKing) November 22, 2020
Tacko Fall has agreed to come back to the Celtics on a two-way deal according to Shams Charania from The Athletic. All is well in Boston again! Offseason can be deemed a success because Tacko is back! Tacko was a part of the Celtics organization last season spending time between Boston and their G-League affiliate in Maine.
While with the Red Claws, he saw his game improve immensely. He was able to carve out a spot in Boston for the bubble in Orlando because of his improvement. Tacko will have another season to improve his game.
I went to see Tacko Fall play in his freshman year at UCF. He was legitimately only even decent because he is so huge.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) August 20, 2020
His improvement from then until now, and his massive improvement from last summer until now, is incredible.
I personally love Tacko. His size is obviously something that stands out, but his attitude is also really good. Players love him and the city of Boston has embraced him as one of their own. If Tacko can carve his way into the rotation I can see him being in green for a little longer.
PARADE’S BACK ON https://t.co/6nKjEQw4rY— Dan Greenberg (@StoolGreenie) November 23, 2020
All in all, this Celtics free agency period so far has been really good. The jury is still out on the Gordon Hayward situation with Charlotte. That’s for another blog post. I’m looking for a sign and trade which will add a nice trade exception for the Celtics to go shopping with if Danny feels the need to.
Free-agent guard Tremont Waters also agreed to a two-way deal with the Celtics. Waters had an amazing season in Maine, earning the G-League Rookie Of The Year award. He spent some time with the Celtics last year but didn’t see much playing time outside of Maine.
Tatum Does the Thing
Jayson Tatum and the Celtics agreed to a 5-year, $195 million extension that will lock up the third team all-NBA wing until the 2025-26 season. Tatum does have a player option for the last year of his contract. The Celtics saw his game leap this past season as he became an All-Star and was named to the All-NBA third team. That means he is a top 15 player. Weep Philly.
Tatum is known to use accolades and rewards as motivation. We saw that happen when he came out of the All-Star break. His production went up all around, but his improvement was more obvious in his three-point shooting where he went from shooting 38-percent to shooting 46-percent. With this extension, I expect Tatum to make another leap in his game. Now hopefully we’ll see a leap in his ink choice too.
Carry on My Hayward Sun
I do not have any update on Gordon Hayward’s situation. I do know that the Hornets have to do something to make this deal work. The longer it takes, the more I am leaning towards it being a sign and trade facilitated by Boston. Keep in mind that Hayward agreed to this deal on Saturday. And if the Hornets were going to waive one of their players like they had reported, then Hayward would have been signed on Sunday. Hopefully Danny can snag a draft pick or two and a hefty trade exception, obviously. As the situation develops, we will have you covered with analysis of what that deal looks like.
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