The Celtics continue to search for potential pathways to get into the top three of tonight’s NBA draft, league sources tell Marc Stein of The New York Times (Twitter link). An earlier report suggested the C’s haven’t had much luck gaining traction on a move into the mid-lottery using their current three first-round picks (Nos. 14, 26, and 30).
It’s unclear if a potential deal involving Gordon Hayward would provide a path for the Celtics to move up in the draft. Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe (Twitter link) hears that the team is “mostly in a holding pattern” with Hayward for the time being.
Following up on a Tuesday report which indicated that the Hawks are eyeing Hayward, Jared Weiss of The Athletic cites a person familiar with the forward’s thinking who says Hayward wants to be a core part of a winning team and may not be interested in a move to Atlanta. Weiss wonders if the report linking Hayward to the Hawks may have been leaked to increase the 30-year-old’s leverage as he weighs his player option decision.
Meanwhile, in his latest Hoop Collective podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst theorized that the Cavaliers, who hold the No. 5 pick, could be a landing spot for Hayward. Cleveland has interest in Hayward, according to Windhorst, who speculated that the Cavs and Celtics could be open to a deal that involves Andre Drummond and a draft-pick swap. Of course, if Hayward is prioritizing playing for a contender, he may try to angle to avoid a move to Cleveland.
Here are a few more trade-related notes and rumors, with the draft around the corner:
- Also in Windhorst’s latest Hoop Collective podcast, he and colleague Zach Lowe identified the Kings and Magic as two teams that may be looking to get a little younger this offseason rather than being content with competing again for the No. 8 seed. Nemanja Bjelica was identified by Lowe as a possible trade candidate to watch in Sacramento, while Windhorst added that Orlando would likely be open to moving Evan Fournier.
- Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News (Twitter link) wouldn’t be surprised if the Mavericks renew their interest in shooting guard Danny Green, who is being sent to Oklahoma City in a deal for Dennis Schröder. Dallas attempted to sign Green in free agency a year ago, and the rebuilding Thunder are unlikely to be too attached to him.
- Although the Nuggets had interest in acquiring Jrue Holiday, they were surprised by what it cost Milwaukee to land him and didn’t feel pressure to make as significant an offer as the Bucks did, as Mike Singer of The Denver Post explains.