Proposed Trade Sees Celtics Deal Guard for 21-Year-Old Forward

Marcus Smart and Payton Pritchard of the Boston Celtics.

Getty Marcus Smart and Payton Pritchard of the Boston Celtics.

Gone are the days of the Boston Celtics being dumped into the Kevin Durant trade rumors. As things stand, fans no longer have to worry about star wing Jaylen Brown being traded, but just because those trade rumors have faded from existence doesn’t mean Boston is done making moves.

So far this offseason, Brad Stevens has loaded up on depth. He signed forward Danilo Gallinari and made a trade for combo guard Malcolm Brogdon. In turn, the team’s depth is fantastic. f necessary, they could look to move on from one of their guards, as they are particularly loaded at that position.

Well, on trade proposal thought up by Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report would see Boston do just that. With the trade for Brogdon, youngster Payton Pritchard could find himself buried even further on the depth chart, and in this potential deal, the Celtics would ship him off to the Houston Rockets.

Celtics receive: Kenyon Martin Jr., 2024 2nd-Round Pick

Rockets receive: Pritchard

Obviously, Celtics fans may not love this deal, as Pritchard has become somewhat of a fan favorite in Boston. However, it seems extremely unlikely that he’ll earn the playing time he may deserve in the upcoming season.

Pritchard Buried on Celtics Depth Chart

It’s not impossible that Pritchard could continue to be utilized in next season’s rotation, but with the team’s additions at the guard spot over the last year, it’s looking more and more like he could become an afterthought.

“There’s a universe in which the Celtics could make great use of Pritchard’s sharpshooting and sound decision-making, but it doesn’t seem like we’re living in it. Not when he faces a barricade to get to the floor with Marcus Smart, Malcolm Brogdon and Derrick White monopolizing the minutes at point guard next season,” Buckley wrote.

At the beginning of last season, Pritchard struggled to earn regular playing time behind Smart and Dennis Schroder. However, he eventually earned more time toward the end of the year due to his elite three-point shooting.

And while that could be the case again this year, Martin Jr. might be the better fit for the current roster.

Martin Fits Celtics Current Needs

Boston’s addition of Brogdon strengthened their backcourt, but right now, their wing depth is seriously lackluster. Adding Martin Jr. to the mix would give the Celtics a solid young player who could earn minutes because of his athleticism alone.

“Now, Martin wouldn’t be guaranteed to get minutes with the Celtics, but his athleticism and upside could allow him to carve a niche in this frontcourt as a high-energy finisher. If they can coax consistency out of his outside shot—he’s a career 36 percent shooter from deep but only 66.7 percent at the line—they could develop him into a valuable piece of their reserve rotation,” Buckley said.

Martin has already requested a trade from the Rockets, so for them, this could be a solid deal, too. If Boston feels as though Pritchard could find himself struggling to earn consistent playing time, dealing him for extra wing depth might be the smart move, especially when the player coming back is only 21 years old.

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