The NBA offseason is in its early stages, with teams beginning to formulate their summer plans. That includes the Celtics who will look to round out a roster that reached the NBA Finals in 2022.
On Tuesday morning, Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens spoke with the media to discuss both the end of the team’s season, and look ahead to the offseason. When it comes to the latter, Stevens told reporters this year is business as usual after the team’s Finals run.
“As far as improving, it’s the same old deal: draft, develop, and deals,” he said. “You just look for things that make the most sense within your group”
So, what makes the most sense for the Celtics at this point? “If you ask me right now what we need, I’d like to have a little bit more scoring – consistent scoring off the bench,” Stevens said.
Scoring doesn’t come cheap, and the Celtics are right up against the cap. However, they have multiple trade exceptions as well as the mid-level exception to help facilitate things, with Stevens saying that the team “got the okay to do whatever we need to do” from ownership regarding using the tools at their disposal.
The other thing that could help the Celtics is that they may not look to attack the top of the market to fill this need. Steven described it as a “short-term need,” and that he “believe[s] in a couple of the guys that didn’t get a chance to play as much [last season], that they will continue to improve and be knocking on that door soon. So we have some development opportunities within our own organization.”
That wasn’t the only need Stevens identified. Asked about the ball movement issues during the Finals, Stevens said “I think we need a little bit more playmaking. I think that that’s real.” He did acknowledge that that improvement could come from within, noting “I think we need more playmaking, but I don’t think we can expect to be stagnant,” but also adding “in this in this league, the more guys that can make a play offensively, the better.”
“We’ll continue to scour and look at what our opportunities are with our trade exceptions and the draft and our limited resources in free agency,” he added. With just a second round pick in this year’s draft, a trade or free agency are the most likely avenues towards those additions. Who are some players who could fit the bill in either or both categories? Here’s some players expected to be available…