The trade market continues to bustle in the NBA. The Memphis Grizzlies, Boston Celtics and New Orleans Pelicans worked on a three-team deal over the weekend, with Celtics leading scorer Jeff Green headed to the Grizzlies in the swap.
Boston, in exchange, will end up with the Pelicans’ Austin Rivers, veteran wingman Tayshaun Prince, and a future first-round pick from Memphis, as reported by ESPN’s Marc Stein.
For shipping Rivers to Massachusetts, the Pelicans get reserve guard Quincy Pondexter from the Grizzlies.
Rivers might not want to get too comfortable with his father’s former team, though. Doc Rivers has expressed an interest in getting involved in the expanding deal to make a trade for his son.
"I would," the Los Angeles Clippers coach and executive said of acquiring the younger Rivers, per ESPN. "I think a year ago I probably wouldn't. I think I would for sure. I think this team could handle that. He's a downhill guard, which is something we need, so I certainly would [be open to coaching him].”
For skeptical Clippers fans, Rivers’ willingness to trade for kin is a bit alarming. Since joining Lob City, the general manger half of Doc hasn’t done a whole lot of good for the Clippers’ roster. Boasting one of the worst benches in the Western Conference, they’re giving serious minutes to the likes of Hedo Turkoglu and Glen “Big Baby” Davis this year—players well past their time, who rarely turn a positive in the box score.
Austin Rivers has shown growth in 2014-15, but he’s still a below-average talent with a lot to prove—is Rivers constructing his roster with more sentiment than good basketball sense?
For the Grizzlies, this is a deeper investment on a team that has a chance to win it all this year. Green will give defenses even more scoring to deal with, coming off the Memphis bench along with Vince Carter and Kosta Koufos. A great team just got better.
Boston, meanwhile, continues to jettison assets, clearly looking to double down on their rebuilding efforts as they clear the deck and accumulate a wealth of draft picks. First Rajon Rondo, now Green … if you like anything you see left on the Celtics’ roster, you might as well give GM Danny Ainge a call about it.
— John Wilmes