Anthony Davis has long been mentioned in Celtics NBA trade rumors given that the C’s still have a treasure-trove of assets and that Boston has been “one player away” from being able to legitimately compete with Golden State for a title. Several media members that are tied-in to the Celtics front office have continually floated that Boston boss Danny Ainge is infatuated with Davis – dating back to 2016.
“Rival executives expect Boston to be keeping close tabs on New Orleans,” Yahoo’s Chris Mannix said last year at this time. “I could see next summer (2018) with two years left on his contract, Anthony Davis being available. And if he would be available, Boston would have a whole bunch of assets to be willing to deal.”
Last week, NBC Sports Boston’s Mike Gorman told CLNS that Davis is “the only player [he knows] of that the Celtics would really put everybody on the table for.”
Gorman continued: “I don’t think [Davis] is going to leave New Orleans, so that’s a moot point. But Danny has a way of sometimes making things happen that don’t look like they’re going to happen.”
Mannix’s comments at the time were also contingent upon the Pelicans having a bad 2017-18 NBA season. The Pelicans most certainly did not, as even without DeMarcus Cousins New Orleans toppled the Trail Blazers in the first round as a six seed. Davis also emerged as a bona fide NBA MVP candidate after Cousins went down due to injury, and “The Brow” is just now entering his prime at age 25.
When these trade rumors were first mentioned as well – the future of the ownership in New Orleans was mighty shaky. Longtime owner Tom Benson was sick, and he was in court with his heirs over the future ownership of the franchise. Benson eventually settled with his heirs in February 2017, before passing away this past March.
Benson’s widow, Gayle, has taken over the franchise and as pointed out here – the people of New Orleans are thrilled with the job she has done thus far.
In other words, the Pelicans are not relocating any time soon, and they aren’t looking to cut costs any time soon. In fact, the Pelicans want to add – as Davis himself is starting to recruit LeBron James to come play in New Orleans.
That likely won’t happen. The most likely scenario here is that the Pelicans re-sign DeMarcus Cousins in free agency, and run it back with this group in 2018-19.
If the Pelcians lose Cousins in NBA free agency, that would open the door a crack for the Celtics to strike – but again – the price tag for landing arguably one of the top two or three players in the league is going to be astronomical. Jayson Tatum would only be a starting point for Dell Demps and the Pelicans.