So far this summer, the Boston Celtics have done a great job of filling the necessary holes on their roster. After their loss to the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, it was clear that they could use some extra shooting and additional playmaking. Brad Stevens addressed that by signing Danilo Gallinari and trading for Malcolm Brogdon.
That being said, there are a couple of spots that could still use filling. Past Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum on the depth chart, Boston doesn’t really have any wing depth. And the area of need even more glaring than that is the backup center position.
However, the Celtics do have some TPEs still available to them. The most prominent two are the Juancho Hernangomez trade exception, worth roughly $6.9 million, and the Dennis Schroder trade exception, worth roughly $5.9 million. In an article published by Sean Deveney of Heavy.com, he spoke to a Western Conference coach that pegged Phoenix Suns center Bismack Biyombo as a potential trade target for Boston.
“He is the kind of find that the Celtics could really use in that hole, a guy who blocks some shots, plays good defense and holds down the fort off the bench,” the coach told Deveney. “If Phoenix has some injuries and is really disappointing, maybe he winds up on the market but they really like what he did for them last year.”
That being said, it probably wouldn’t be easy to acquire Biyombo.
Would Be ‘Surprised’ if Suns Traded Biyombo
While Biyombo might be the perfect fit on the Celtics, he’s also a great fit with the Suns, especially considering the fact that they lost JaVale Mcgee in free agency to the Dallas Mavericks. Because of that, it’s unlikely that Phoenix trades him.
“Biyombo did exactly what they wanted from him last year, and that was the reason they let (JaVale) McGee go. They kept Ayton so you can expect they’ll go into the year with Biyombo as their No. 2 center—so I’d be really surprised if they go out and look to trade him,” the coach told Deveney.
After joining the Suns last year, Biyombo fit in perfectly. In 36 games with the Suns, Biyombo averaged 5.8 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 0.7 blocks on 59.3% shooting from the field.
But while Boston could use another big man on the roster, they’ve also noted that they’re comfortable moving into the season with Luke Kornet as their big off the bench.
Celtics Are ‘Really High’ on Kornet
During the introductory press conference for Brogdon and Gallinari, Stevens was asked about the backup center position. In his response, he said that the team is “really high” on Kornet.
“We’re really high on Luke. We’ve been really high on Luke. We thought he had a terrific G-League season, and think that he can step right in and be a passer, a ball-handler, a mover, a screener, and a roller when need be. We’ll probably add one more person that can play in that area, but we’re really believing in Luke as not only depth that can help fill out the roster, but also be ready to help us, and help us win. I think he’s at that stage where he can help us do that,” Stevens explained.
So, while nabbing a guy like Biyombo would be helpful, it’s more than likely that the Celtics head into the season with the guys they have now.