Boston Celtics’ Recent Trade Only the Beginning

By Michael LeDuc
Courtney Lee
Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Celtics recently required Jerryd Bayless in exchange for Courtney Lee, and it may be an indication of what’s to come. With a 13-21 record, Danny Ainge is bound to make a few more moves.

Trading Lee was the first domino to fall this season. Ainge has an opportunity to trade more players on his current roster. There are a few players that have similar situations that Lee had like Jeff Green, Brandon Bass and Gerald Wallace. These players have multi-year contracts, but are not significant to the Celtics’ future.

Green has shown promise in spurts, but is owed $18 million over this year and next, in addition to a player option for the 2015-16 season for about an extra $9 million. Bass is also a solid role player and is owed over $13 million through next season. Wallace is vastly overpaid and is owed over $20 million for two more years after this season. These are players the Celtics need to move.

With the Lee trade, the Celtics shed a salary they were committed to until after the 2015-16 season. In return, Bayless is a free agent after this season. If Ainge can make similar moves involving Green, Bass and Wallace, it will be extremely beneficial for Boston as the Celtics could use the financial flexibility provided.

Green can bring back the most value to Boston, as he can be a useful offensive weapon on any given team. He is in the wrong situation in Boston, and is clearly not a first-option type of guy. If the Celtics can get a cheaper, young player or draft picks, it is a move worth making. Bass is more similar to Lee. His contract is not a huge burden and he could bring back an expiring contract just as Lee did.

Wallace, on the other hand, is a totally different story. Although he is a solid veteran and does a lot of little things, he will definitely be the most difficult to move. His long-term commitment and high salary is a bad combination for a trade to happen. Basically, he’s worth a bag of balls right now. If he can be part of some kind of package or if a first-rounder is thrown in, maybe a contender will bite.

Ainge made a step in the right direction by trading Lee. The trade is hopefully a sign of more moves to come over the course of the season.

Michael LeDuc is a Boston Celtics writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @mike_leduc, and add him on Google.

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