By Alex Barth, 985TheSportsHub.com
It appears the Boston Celtics are staying active in upgrading their front court at the NBA’s trade deadline. Following news yesterday that the team is in talks with the Houston Rockets regarding center Clint Capela, Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix is now reporting that the Celtics have shown interest in Washington Wizards forward Davis Bertans.
From Mannix’s trade deadline primer:
“There is strong interest in Boston in Davis Bertans, who would fill a couple of needs. Bertans could join the frontcourt rotation and juice what has been a brutally bad shooting bench. The Celtics second unit is 28 in three-point shooting, per NBA.com, sandwiched between Minnesota and Cleveland. For a team that makes a living beyond the three-point line … that’s bad. Washington has effectively hung up on teams looking to extract Bertans, but Boston could make things interesting if they throw a pick or two into the pot. Because really … what are they holding on to them for?”
Like Mannix says, Bertans is a multi-facet fit for Boston. The 6-foot-10 forward has played primarily off the bench in Washington, but is still averaging almost 30 minutes per game putting up 15 points and five rebounds per contest. Despite averaging eight three-point attempts per game, his 42.9 percent hit rate from beyond the arc would still be the best among Celtics this season. (Kemba Walker takes about the same number of three-point shots per game, and has a 38.8 percent from deep this year). He also has the ability to move the ball, averaging almost two assists per game from the power forward position. Bertans comes with a very reasonable contract, he’s making $7 million this season and will be a free agent this summer.
As Mannix states above, the Wizards have not been taking offers of the 27-year-old. But with a 17-32 record and no sign of John Wall returning this season, can Washington afford to pass on this chance? The Celtics have three first-round picks in June’s NBA Draft, including one from Memphis that could potentially end up in the lottery. General manager Tommy Sheppard has a chance to seriously increase his draft capital for a player who the team clearly doesn’t view as starting caliber (four starts in 40 games this season) and will likely bolt in free agency come July.
Danny Ainge has a few days to attempt to wear Sheppard down, with the NBA trade deadline this coming Thursday at 3 p.m.
Alex Barth is a writer and 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. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Hate mail? Let him hear it on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at Alexander.Barth@bbgi.com