By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
Previous reports indicated that Kyrie Irving's possible departure from the Celtics didn't deter Danny Ainge in his pursuit of Anthony Davis. The latest, however, is that the C's held back due to uncertainty.
Per Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald, who also recently reported that Irving is expected to sign with the Brooklyn Nets after becoming a free agent in July, the Celtics never made a substantial-enough offer for Davis to come close to matching the massive haul that the Pelicans got from the big man's new team, the Lakers.
Past offers may have been better back when "there was still a reasonable belief Irving could be kept," according to Bulpett's report. But later negotiations became tougher due to Irving's uncertainty. They reportedly weren't completely against trading Jayson Tatum at any point, but the package would have been limited beyond him once the Celtics weren't sure about Irving's future.
Ultimately, the Lakers sent Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart, and three first-round picks to New Orleans for Davis. It's not likely that Ainge would have sniffed an offer like that, especially considering that agent Rich Paul has indicated Davis wouldn't want to sign in Boston long-term and Irving appears to be on the way out - even to the Lakers?
Bulpett also reported that the Celtics are working on a possible two-year extension for Al Horford to tack on to the final year of his current contract. Perhaps the Celtics are simply stuck now, and will have to move forward with Tatum and Jaylen Brown as their top scoring options with Horford, Gordon Hayward, and Marcus Smart rounding out the core.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at [email protected].