Boston Celtics Crazy Trade Idea: Rajon Rondo to Utah Jazz!
posted at 12/11/2013 10:31 PM EST
Boston Celtics Crazy Trade Idea: Rajon Rondo to Utah Jazz
By Mark Evans2 hours ago
COMMENTARY | Full disclosure: There is no report here, and there's no reason to believe that this trade will actually happen. It's always fun to speculate a little, and that's all this is.
In this scenario, Rajon Rondo would be sent to the Utah Jazz, with the Boston Celtics receiving Gordon Hayward and Marvin Williams. The salaries would work, although Boston would likely need draft considerations as well. Coincidentally, the Jazz piled up some draft picks this summer when they chose to take on some salary.
Danny Ainge loves to have draft picks; just ask the Brooklyn Nets.
Brad Stevens coached Hayward at Butler University, where both experienced a ton of success. It's reasonable to believe that they could continue their work in Boston, where Stevens is already squeezing the most out of a limited roster. Williams, who only has one year left on his deal, would simply be thrown in to make the salary numbers work. He'd most likely ride the bench for the rest of the year until his contract runs out.
In Rondo, the Jazz would have a backcourt star to match with Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter. They did just draft Trey Burke, but it's hard to believe this would be enough for Utah to turn down Rondo. It's unclear exactly when Rondo will return from injury, so the Jazz would have some time to figure out their plan.
With Hayward and Jeff Green, the Celtics would have a pair of long, versatile, dynamic wing players. Their length would certainly be troublesome for opposing offenses, which could help make up for some defensive deficiencies amongst Boston big men. Depending on matchups, Stevens could use them at both forward positions in a small lineup, or with Hayward at shooting guard and Green at small forward for a more conventional lineup. It's always good to give a smart coach lineup flexibility.
It's weird saying this, but maybe Stevens really likes what Jordan Crawford brings to the team at point guard. If you haven't noticed, Crawford has been very good this season. Stevens runs an offense reliant on spacing; a Crawford, Hayward, Green, Jared Sullinger, and Kelly Olynyk lineup would really spread out opponents.
Of course, the Celtics would need to extend Hayward for this to make any sort of sense.
Extending Rondo will be pricey, and we're still not sure what to expect out of him. He will no longer be surrounded by Hall of Fame teammates to make shots, and he's still recovering from a torn ACL. For a team like the Jazz that probably can't build their team through free agency, gaining a star like Rondo is a win. With all of their draft picks, Boston may be more set on building through the draft.
Important question: Do we know that Rondo wants to stay in Boston long-term now that the Celtics are not a championship team? Maybe he would like a fresh start.
This will probably never happen, but it's fun to run through a hypothetical once in a while. Still, the Celtics would make out better here than they would trying to deal Rondo to the New York Knicks, which has been rumored.
Mark lives in the Boston area and has been covering New England sports for various blogs over the past 4 years. He has been featured on Fox Sports Yardbarker, Fox Sports, and Sports Illustrated "Hot Clicks", and has been published on Celtics 24/7, Bleacher Report, and Sports-Kings.