Boston is rebuilding. Doc Rivers and Kevin Garnett will be gone soon. As much as I am sure every Celtics fan want Paul Pierce to retire a Celtic, and even Pierce probably envisioned starting and ending his career in the same place, it probably doesn’t make much sense for Pierce or Boston to continue their relationship.
So who wants him? What does Boston want back? What makes sense for both sides? And where will Pierce be accepting of going to play?
Here is my list of what could happen:
Atlanta: Cap space, can sign another player to team with Pierce and Horford. Can offer SG John Jenkins and a pick.
Cleveland: Cap space, and Kyrie Irving. Could offer #1 pick, #19 pick, or young players like Dion Waiters and Tyler Zeller.
Dallas: Cap space, and Dirk Nowitzki. Could offer their first round pick, #13 overall.
Denver: 4th best record in the NBA last year. Could offer Gallinari and a young player like Evan Fournier or Jordan Hamilton.
Detroit: Cap space, good young PF-C combo. Could offer their 1st, #8 overall.
Houston: Cap space, young talented team headlined by James Harden. Could offer any of the young players: Chandler Parsons, Terrance Jones, Royce White, Thomas Robinson, or Donatas Motiejunas.
New Orleans: Cap space, and Anthony Davis. The Hornets could offer Eric Gordon straight up, or they could combo Ryan Anderson, Austin Rivers, and their draft choice, #6 overall.
New York: 2nd best record in East, with Carmelo Anthony. It’d be odd, but would Boston consider taking Amar’e Stoudemire if the the Knicks took Courtney Lee or Jason Terry with Pierce?
San Antonio: Cap space, and a great chance to win another title. The Spurs aren’t trade Leonard, but could part with Danny Green or Gary Neal or sign and trade Tiago Splitter and pair them with a future first round pick. They also have a number of overseas players Boston may want the rights to.
Washington: John Wall, Brad Beal, and whoever they draft this year. Hear me out on this, would both sides show interest in a Nene/Ariza for Pierce/Terry or Lee deal? Celtics land a center and clear some space. Wizards add a veteran to their youthful core.