With the NBA trade deadline less than 24 hours away, all eyes remain on the New Orleans Pelicans and Anthony Davis as he looks to be dealt.
If he gets traded by 12 p.m. PT Thursday, it would likely be to the Los Angeles Lakers. Although, the two teams are currently not in contact after the Lakers offered just about every young player they have and multiple draft picks for Davis and still got turned down.
Part of the reason that Pelicans general manager Dell Demps is holding onto Davis is that the Boston Celtics can get involved in negotiations if he waits until the summer to make a deal.
While Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has not promised that any specific players like Jayson Tatum will be on the table, he reportedly has informed Demps that no player would be off limits, per Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe:
Sources said the Pelicans have sought guarantees from the Celtics surrounding specific packages, but the Celtics have been reluctant to make absolute promises, simply because so much can transpire in five months, such as injuries. Nevertheless, sources said, the Celtics have made it clear that they will be ready and willing to offer an explosive package when the time arrives, and that no specific player will be off limits in negotiations.
Davis has made it known that he has no desire to play for the Celtics, so it is interesting that Ainge still plans to attempt to trade for him. It could perhaps be in an effort to get Kyrie Irving to stay in free agency, pairing the two All-Stars.
Demps putting his trust in Ainge could end up backfiring as a lot can change between now and the summer. He may not have the Lakers’ offer to fall back on if talks fall through with the Celtics. The Lakers could shift their focus to other star free agents instead.
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