The Celtics, however, did not have to endure The Process to get the results of The Process. They did not have to hollow out the roster, create a league-wide crisis with blatant Cheap Spirit Jerseys tanking and go 75-253 in that span to collect those young players. They simply had to fleece the Nets back in 2013.
Now, with (perhaps) a total of six first-round picks in the next two drafts, there is still a chance that Boston will make a trade for a major player. But there is no need to panic if they don’t. The team has been aggressive in its trade offers for the likes of George and Butler, and for players like Blake Griffin and Justise Winslow.
But as with the George deal — the Pacers were not willing to be patient with the Celtics, and wanted George out of the East — having assets is not the only key to getting a deal done. The Clippers ultimately pulled back on dealing Griffin, and Charlotte owner Michael Jordan liked Frank Kaminsky too much to deal his pick to Boston two years ago. The Ainge complaints will continue, but you can’t force the other side to say yes.
Similarly, you can’t force a free agent to say yes. The Celtics put together a good pitch to Kevin Durant last summer, and Durant conceded that he was nearly swayed to go to Boston. But he wound up with the Warriors. Boston could do much the same thing with Gordon Hayward — get him close to signing, but ultimately lose out to Miami or Utah.
Why he’s here: He was expected to be a key cog in the Pirates’ lineup after posting career-best numbers last year; however, the struggles that plagued him in the second half of ’16 have carried over into this year. Polanco’s numbers are rather pedestrian, and while he’s had flashes Cheap Throwback NBA Jerseys this year (a .900 OPS in May, for instance) he hasn’t been able to keep it up (a .520 OPS in June).