Boston Celtics: At NBA trade deadline, Danny Ainge stays true to his style

Boston Celtics Danny Ainge (Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images)
Boston Celtics Danny Ainge (Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images) /

Boston Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge did everything he needed to do to keep the team competitive, while thinking about the future.

Th big headline from this year’s NBA trade deadline was the Cleveland Cavaliers’ decision to trade most of their summer acquisitions for younger talent.  For Boston fans, the biggest signing that the Boston Celtics made was former Phoenix Suns big man, Greg Monroe (for one year worth $5 million).

As minimal as that seems, Danny Ainge actually stayed true to his main goal.  Build for the future, but stay talented enough to compete now.  Obviously, that’s easy when you have Kyrie Irving and Al Horford on your squad.

Although the C’s have been successful with those guys, there were still some holes that needed to be fixed heading into the deadline.

While Monroe isn’t a superstar, he provides much needed bench scoring and rebounding. Something that was truly lacking from Brad Stevens’ rotation for most of this season.

Ainge has always been known as someone who makes conservative moves until there’s a major opportunity that can help change the face of the franchise.  A prime example was the trade the C’s executed with the Brooklyn Nets back in 2013 (the full details of this trade can be found here on SB Nation).    The Celtics collected three picks in that deal, which would eventually lead to Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum.

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The same thing happened this past summer.  Initially, it seemed like the only player Boston would obtain was Gordon Hayward.  Then, the Cavs started shopping Kyrie around, and Ainge took advantage by trading for him.

A lot of the times, opportunities like these rarely pop up.  That being said, Ainge is a master at not spending too much on middle-of-the-pack players.  Unless there is a superstar player on the market, there’s no reason for any team to overspend on them.

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More often than not, a lot of GMs will hand out ridiculous contracts to guys who don’t deserve it.  The Magic spending $74 million on Bismarck Biyombo is a good example.  Or the Portland Trail Blazers awarding Allen Crabbe four years for $75 million back in 2016.  Heck even Tim Hardaway Jr. getting $74 million for four years is ludicrous.

While the cap boom during that year is what caused a lot of these over-payments, GMs should use more common sense.  None of these players are talented enough to help beat the Warriors.  Ainge knows that. Everyone should build for the next decade.

Therefore, he’s not going to tie-up the team’s cap space with a non-impact guy.  Doing that could ruin all the of the hard work that the Stevens has put in over the past five years.  Not only would they not beat Golden State now, but they most likely would not be able to compete for a title in the next ten years.  It would also stunt the development of their younger players.

Ainge understands that they can make another run at a NBA Finals trip with the team he has now.  He’s got the perfect system.  As FanSided writer Dylan Woods said, this quiet trade deadline for the C’s is good for their chemistry.  Chemistry that they will need for when the Warriors’ dynasty is over.

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Casual fans may be initially disappointed in the lack of moves the Celtics made during the deadline, but it’s for the better.  When Hayward comes back, and Tatum and Brown improve their already strong skill set, the Boston Celtics could be the NBA Finals favorites for 2022.