Bad News for Boston Celtics with Phoenix Suns Now in Mix to Land Kevin Love

By Michael LeDuc
Kevin Love
Getty Images

If the NBA Lottery had presented different results three weeks ago, the Boston Celtics could have been easy favorites to land a premier player this offseason. But we know how the NBA works by now. However, even with landing the No. 6 pick, it still looked like Boston would be able to put together an enticing package to acquire Kevin Love. Given their nine first-round picks in the next four years and young talent, the Celtics would have the most to offer. However, the dream to land Love went from a real possibility to a complete nightmare in a matter of days.

The 5 trade scenarios to acquire Kevin Love presented which teams were able to offer the best packages to obtain the services of Love. The Chicago Bulls, Golden State Warriors, Sacramento Kings and the Celtics were at the top of the list. The Bulls and Warriors were favorites, but there was still hope that the Celtics could compete with them. Now, the Phoenix Suns have entered the realm of possibility to add Love, crushing the hopes and dreams of those four teams.

For the Celtics, this is terrible news. The Suns are willing to offer anything and everything to the Minnesota Timberwolves to obtain the All-Star.

At first glance you may think their plan is to pair Love up with Eric Bledsoe or Goran Dragic, but that’s not the case. Phoenix will not hesitate to throw one or both of them into a package that would be shipped to Minnesota. This makes them the indisputable favorites in the Kevin Love sweepstakes. The Suns have three first-round picks at No. 14, No. 18 and No. 29, the expiring contracts of Channing Frye, Dragic (player option for 2015-16), Gerald Green, a legion of young talent and the cap space to sign Love to max money and another marquee free agent.

The Suns have a young, promising player in Markieff Morris and other youthful commodities like his twin Marcus Morris, Miles Plumlee, Alex Len, Archie Goodwin and of course Bledsoe. Since he is a free agent, the Suns are willing to match any offer for Bledsoe, even a max contract.

I think a deal would look something like this: The Suns trade their No. 13 pick, No. 29 pick, a future first-round pick,  Bledsoe, Markieff Morris, Frye and Green to Minnesota for Love and a bad contract (enter Chase Budinger, Kevin Martin, J.J. Barea, etc.). That is only one of the many combinations the Suns can offer.

In my opinion, it is way too much to give up for a player who has never led his team to the playoffs, especially if there is no promise of commitment. However, acquiring Love opens the door to sign another premier player like Carmelo Anthony. The Suns have the cap space to make it happen.

If the Suns are willing to give up their farm for Love, then the Bulls, Warriors, Kings and Celtics are all out of the picture. Sorry, Celtics fans; this is going to be a longer rebuilding process than many had hoped for.

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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