By Michael LeDuc @mike_leduc on March 15, 2014
After a rebuilding year in 2013-14, the Boston Celtics will do everything they can to be in contention yet again. Boston fans tend to get impatient if rebuilding years take too long. An obvious, feasible splash the Celtics have the means to make is to acquire Kevin Love. However, we will leave him out of the equation and look at other ways to improve the Celtics for the 2014-15 season.
Boston is projected to have a top-five pick; assuming Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker and Joel Embiid are already selected, then the Celtics should select guard Marcus Smart. He could either push Rajon Rondo out the door, or he could be used at SG alongside Rondo in the backcourt. I vote next to Rondo, unless a lucrative offer is made for Rondo. Whatever the case, his scoring ability and competitive nature are too impressive to pass up.
The Golden State Warriors may not be able to afford Harrison Barnes, so why not get something in return? Boston can offer their projected top-20 pick from the Brooklyn Nets, Brandon Bass and a couple of second rounders for the promising small forward. Barnes is primed to break out eventually and the Celtics should target him.
Greg Monroe, a free agent this offseason, would be perfect next to Jared Sullinger. He's tall, strong and is more of viable option in the post. Monroe also has great passing ability, a perfect complement to Sullinger's perimeter game. Rondo could use some reliable hands around the rim, while the Celtics sure could use height and someone who can clean up the glass. Boston could pull off a sign-and-trade with Detroit involving Jeff Green.
Given all the acquisitions so far, the Celtics could really use a player who can spread the floor. Monroe does his work in the paint, Barnes and Smart are both slashers and Sullinger isn't a knock-down shooter. The Celtics could find cheap marksman in free agency. Jerryd Bayless, Jason Richardson, Jimmer fredette, Anthony Morrow, Alan Anderson and Jodie Meeks are all feasible options.
Kris Humphries is having a terrific season in Boston and should be re-signed. He's a bruiser and an excellent rebounder who seems to find a scoring touch with Rondo on the floor. He's the perfect backup forward. Unless the price tag is too much, then the Celtics should bring back Hump. Boston's lineup in 2014-15 would look like: Greg Monroe, Sullinger, Harrison Barnes, Marcus Smart, Rondo; key bench players: Humphries, Olynyk, Wallace, "shooter."
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