Saturday, July 13, 2024

Jrue Holiday trade, revisited: Full list of players, NBA Draft picks involved in Celtics deal for star guard | Sporting News Australia

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The Celtics used a transformative offseason in 2023 to build one of the most dominant teams the NBA has seen.

After coming up short in the Eastern Conference Finals, team president Brad Stevens went back to the drawing board to come up with two separate blockbuster deals to bring Kristaps Porzingis and Jrue Holiday to Boston.

As good as both have been, Holiday has proven to be invaluable for this Celtics team. The 34-year-old has seamlessly fit into his role with Boston, earning the sixth All-Defensive Team selection of his career along the way.

With Holiday and the Celtics on the cusp of an NBA title, revisit the deal that meant the defensive ace would be suiting up in Celtic green.

MORE: Revisiting Boston’s offseason move to acquire Kristaps Porzingis

Revisiting Celtics trade for Jrue Holiday

Celtics receive:

Trail Blazers receive:

  • Malcolm Brogdon
  • Robert Williams III
  • 2024 first-round pick (via Warriors)
  • 2029 first-round pick

The Celtics motioned to acquire Holiday days after he was sent to Portland as part of the deal that sent Damian Lillard to Milwaukee.

As part of the deal, Boston parted ways with the Sixth Man of the Year in Brogdon and Williams, who unlocked the team’s defense with his roaming and rim protection. In addition to each player, the Celtics rerouted the Warriors’ first-round pick in 2024 and sent their own first-round pick from 2029.

Boston was aggressive in its pursuit of Holiday, who held the Celtics in high regard after his trade from Milwaukee, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. With the Trail Blazers fully embracing a rebuild, the Celtics’ willingness to include draft capital allowed them to get the deal done.

Making the deal even better for Boston is that Holiday inked a contract extension to remain with the franchise through at least the 2026-27 season. As fruitful as Year 1 has been, that should be music to the Celtics’ ears.

At the time, it appeared Portland would reroute Brogdon but the Blazers held on to the veteran, who served as a mentor for the team’s up-and-coming roster. And while Williams dealt with injury woes, he is 26 and under contract for the next two seasons.

With the Warriors missing the 2024 NBA Playoffs, their pick has more value. Portland will select 14th overall in addition to owning its own pick — the seventh pick in 2024.

MORE: Why Joel Embiid sent shot at Bucks over Jrue Holiday trade

Revisiting Jrue Holiday trade grades

In October, I gave the Celtics an A- for their move to acquire Holiday from the Blazers.

My concerns about Boston’s depth and locker room morale kept me from giving the team an A but those concerns proved insignificant thanks in large part to the contributions of Sam Hauser, Luke Kornet and Payton Pritchard as well as Joe Mazzulla’s coaching. 

Here is why I was so high on the deal:

The Celtics can be downright scary defensively and essentially have six starters with a rotation of Holiday, Brown, Tatum, Derrick White, Kristaps Porzingis and Al Horford. Depending on the matchup, Boston can opt for a smaller, perimeter-heavy lineup or a two-big lineup that features Horford and Porzingis in the frontcourt.

In addition to their defensive prowess, the six players fit together seamlessly, perfectly complementing Boston’s All-Star duo of Tatum and Brown. Holiday starred in the utility role throughout the season, proving to be the perfect acquisition for the Celtics.

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