Danny Ainge and the Boston Celtics are on the look out for a superstar.
According to Mark Stein of ESPN, Ainge and the Celtics will be looking to package a magnitude of young players and draft picks they have together for DeMarcus Cousins.
The former Kentucky product averaged 24.1 points, 12.7 rebounds and 3.6 assists this season. Cousins also added 1.5 steals and 1.7 blocks in his first ever all-star season. His scoring and rebounding stats rank him in the top 5 around the league for both categories. This is something that no other player did this season in the association.
Cousins has stepped up his production and general play significantly in the 2014-15 season, improving both his defensive and offensive game. Cousins has also looked more composed this season, looking like more of a leader than he has before, with less brain explosions and temper tantrums that gave him a bad boy reputation around the league. These things have previously caused both players and coaches out the door in previous seasons.
Boogie is one of the best offensive players in the entire game right now. He has a polished low post game, where he uses his wonderful blend of skill and raw power to get buckets in the paint. He also has a mid-range jump shot that he has been developing over the years, that is starting to go down quite a lot more.
Despite Cousins being such a great player, the Kings will have to listen to the Celtics' trade offer. This is because with all the draft picks and young players GM Danny Ainge has stored up in Boston, this trade package might just be too much to ignore. The Celtics could potentially have up to 18 total draft picks over the next 4 drafts and while Ainge obviously won't give up all or even most of the draft picks he has, a few of the more valuable ones he owns will be very enticing for Sacramento. Players like Avery Bradley and Jared Sullinger may also be a part of this compelling package that Ainge could be sending Sacramento's way.
Sacramento may also feel that Cousins doesn't fit coach George Karl's up tempo, high octane offense that he has used previously in Denver, as Cousins likes to post up and slow things down on offense. If Sacramento feels this way, shipping him out to Boston would be the best option for the Kings. To replace him, with all of the cap space he would free up, the Kings could go after a center like DeAndre Jordan in free agency, who would better fit Karl's system and would also give them a great rim protector and rebounder.
The Celtics clearly need a superstar to build around. They have role players galore and an extremely intelligent coach in Brad Stevens, but no superstar. Going in hard for a superstar, like Cousins could give them the necessary fire power needed to contend in the weak Eastern Conference. Especially considering that the Celtics made the playoffs with the lacklustre roster that they had this year. Cousins would give the Celtics a go to option on offense that their team is most certainly missing, even with the addition that they made on trade deadline day of Isaiah Thomas.
If this rumour sounds familiar, that is because it is. In early 2013, when the Celtics still had Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo, the Celtics attempted a trade for Cousins after management were reportedly sick of his personality and his attitude. The deal did not go down because the Kings believed Cousins' talent outweighed the harm that he brought with his attitude and that the Celtics did not have enough assets to grab some one with the skill of a DeMarcus Cousins back in 2013. Now that the Celtics have truck loads of assets, the deal now has a better chance of coming off. Since Danny Ainge was clearly interested in him back then, this rumour makes a little bit more sense.
While it is still quite unlikely that this trade would take place due to the unreliability of rumours in the NBA these days, it is a deal that does make sense on quite a few levels and something that will give both Boston and Sacramento something to think about.