The Boston Celtics got back in the win column with a victory on Sunday. However, through 42 games, the once-perceived title-contenders own a record of just 21-21, sitting in sixth place in the Eastern Conference. With the trade deadline just three days away, the pressure is on for Danny Ainge to pull the trigger on a deal in hopes of aiding a late-season push.
The Athletic’s Jared Weiss and Sam Amick have reported that the Celtics have an interest in acquiring forward Aaron Gordon from the Orlando Magic and have in fact engaged in trade conversations in hopes of prying him away from the Sunshine State.
NBA Insider Shams Charania added that no deal appears imminent at this time, as the Magic have “held a firm value of its 25-year-old forward.” With that said, he also notes that there have been “significant talks” on the Gordon front.
Other reportedly interested teams include the Minnesota Timberwolves, Denver Nuggets, Portland Trail Blazers and the Houston Rockets. The latter of which have discussed a trade that would yield Orlando two first-round picks for Gordon’s services.
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Aaron Gordon Requests Trade
Gordon has been readily engulfed in trade chatter dating back to last season. According to Weiss, the Magic have actually come close to pulling the trigger on not one, but two deals in the past. The first, a deadline proposal from last season which would have shipped the former No. 4 overall pick to Phoenix in exchange for Kelly Oubre and draft capital. The second, a pre-draft trade which would have yielded Orlando multiple draft picks from Portland. On both occasions, the Magic reportedly chose to bow out.
However, sources claim Gordon “has been aware of the team’s past trade discussions,” and by the sound of it, the forward could be growing sick of being the subject of rumors for years on end. Per Weiss, Gordon formally requested a trade from the Magic in February.
“Gordon having made it clear last month that he’s ready to move on, and interested teams well aware that he’s eager for a new start in a competitive environment where he can play a pivotal role, it still remains to be seen if a Gordon deal will go down,” Weiss wrote.
Gordon Playing Arguably the Best Ball of His Career
The Celtics don’t have to turn the clock back all too far to reminisce on their last run-in with Gordon. The team got an up-close and personal look at the forward in their 112-96 victory over Orlando on Sunday. It certainly wasn’t the most efficient of performances for Gordon, who finished the game with 12 points on 3-of-13 shooting from the field and just 2-of-7 from beyond the arc. However, he is just one game removed from a 38-point performance in an upset victory over the Brooklyn Nets where he knocked down all but one of his eight 3-point attempts.
On the season, Gordon is averaging 14.7 points, 6.8 rebounds and a career-best 4.2 assists per game. His 40.2% 3-point shooting percentage is 5.3% better than any mark over his previous six NBA seasons and nearly 10% better than his 30.8% output from 2019-20.