The Boston Celtics are no strangers to wild speculation. The team has been engulfed in hypothetical roster moves for years on end, from Jaylen Brown being a rumored trade chip to Bradley Beal and Damian Lillard seen as prime targets for the Cs, the list goes on and on. Theorizing among fans and pundits has only grown in recent months amid Brad Stevens’ highly aggressive approach as the team’s new president of basketball operations.
During the first nine months on the job as Danny Ainge’s successor, Stevens has swung a total of eight trades, including three at this year’s trade deadline. If Celtics legend Cedric Maxwell had his way, Stevens would soon add another trade to that tally.
“I would love to have [Karl-Anthony Towns] in a position to be with the Celtics now because of his ability,” Maxwell said during NBC Sports Boston’s “Early Edition” on February 21. “He’s such a different player than Tatum, and that is really what I look at: the contrast between players. What I like about Karl-Anthony Towns is he has a certain amount of nasty to him, and you don’t see that a lot in the NBA with a lot of different players. I’d really like those guys playing together.”
What Would it Take?
Of course, swinging a deal for one of the league’s premier big men would come at a prestigious price. And while Maxwell noted that “Boston has done a lot of fleecing over the years,” he admits that the Celtics would likely have to give up a lot more than just Rob Williams in order to acquire the three-time All-Star from Minnesota.
In reality, Time Lord would likely be just one bargaining chip in a far larger blockbuster proposal needed to even garner the attention of Timberwolves executive vice president Sachin Gupta, as NBC Sports Boston’s Darren Hartwell highlighted.
“For Boston, that almost certainly would mean bringing Robert Williams, Marcus Smart and multiple first-round draft picks to the negotiating table,” Hartwell wrote. “The Wolves also could hold out for Brown or Tatum in a potential Towns deal, which would probably end any trade discussion.”
KAT Continues to Produce
Fresh off a 3-point contest victory during the 2022 All-Star festivities, Towns is undoubtedly one of the more well-rounded frontcourt players in all of basketball. In 52 games this season, the 26-year-old New Jersey native is averaging 24.4 points, 9.7 rebounds and 4.0 assists. This marks the fourth consecutive year that Towns has averaged above 24.0 points per game and the third occurrence over that same time span that he’s shot at least 40.0% from three.
Towns is currently in the third year of a five-year $158.3 million contract that could keep the Kentucky product in Minnesota through at least the 2023-24 season. With his price point and the roster-gutting assets needed to potentially pry him from the Timberwolves, a trade for Towns seems like a pipedream at this juncture — albeit a tantalizing one.
Of course, that doesn’t mean speculation of Towns coming to Beantown will dissipate. Especially if he continues to pop up in photo-ops with Celtics legends like he did during All-Star weekend.
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