Sunday, June 23, 2024

Celtics refused to offer best players in Leonard offer

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By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

The Boston Celtics were among several teams, who were interested in Kawhi Leonard when he was a member of the San Antonio Spurs. According to a report from NBC Sports, the team refused to include its best players in a deal for Leonard.

Their best players are Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward, Jayson Tatum, and Jaylen Brown. The report says that the Celtics did not give the Spurs a compelling offer.

Boston Celtics player Jaylen Brown shoots the ball against the Cleveland Cavaliers during Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2018 NBA Playoffs between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics
Jaylen Brown shoots the ball against the Cleveland Cavaliers during Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2018 NBA Playoffs between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics (Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images)

Hayward, 28, who missed basically the entire season after suffering a gruesome injury in the season opener against the Cleveland Cavaliers, has three more years on his four-year, $127 million deal. Brown, 21, has one year left on his contract at $5.1 million, as the team holds a 2019 club option for $6.5 million. He also has a qualifying offer of $8.5 million in 2020-21 before becoming a free agent.

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Irving, 26, will make $20 million this season before having a $21.3 million player option for the 2019-20 season. Tatum, 20, will make $6.7 million this season, before having club options for the next two seasons and a qualifying offer in 2021-22.

“All the reporting from this sort of trickled in, I think the Celtics offered most of their best draft picks,” ESPN’s Zach Lowe said. “I don’t think the Celtics just offered, “You could have a bunch of our picks.” I think some of the picks they own – at least two of the picks, if not all of them – that they own from other teams, including the Kings, Grizzlies, and Clippers, I think those were all in the deal.”

The Celtics received the Philadelphia 76ers’ 2019 first-round draft pick. It’s only protected as the No. 1 overall pick.

They’ll also receive the Sacramento Kings’ 2019 first-round draft pick (via Philadelphia) which is also only protected as the No. 1 overall pick. The 76ers will receive the less favorable or the protected of the two picks.

They could also potentially receive a Memphis Grizzlies pitch in 2019. It’s protected from selections 1-8 in 2019, 1-6 in 2020, and unprotected in 2021.

In another deal, the Celtics could receive a first-round draft pick from the Los Angeles Clippers in 2019 if it falls outside of 1-14 in 2019. They could receive it in 2020 if it falls outside of 1-14. Should the pick not be conveyed by 2020, the Clippers would then send their 2022 second-round pick to the Celtics.

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It was these picks that Celtics GM Danny Ainge attempted to use to get Leonard without breaking the bank on his future.

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