Celtics Trade Big Man Acquired in Kemba Walker Deal: Report

Celtics trade Moses Brown, Thunder exploring Kemba Walker deal

Getty Kemba Walker #8 of the Boston Celtics dribbles during the first half of Game Two of their Eastern Conference first-round playoff series against the Brooklyn Nets.

When the Boston Celtics pulled the trigger on the Kemba Walker trade back in June, they received two big men in return. The most notable was Al Horford, a five-time All-Star with a history of success in Beantown. The other, Moses Brown, a rather unproven commodity, but one oozing with loads of potential packed into a 7-foot-2-inch frame.

No one expected the 21-year-old native New Yorker to challenge Horford or Robert Williams for minutes in the frontcourt from the jump. Yet, the hope was Brown could settle in as a quality big off the bench — this reigned especially true for at least a few hours after last year’s starting center Tristan Thompson was dealt to the Sacramento Kings on Friday. Little did we know, Brown would soon follow Thompson out the door.

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Brown Added to Josh Richardson Deal

The Celtics acquired Josh Richardson from the Dallas Mavericks in the team’s second trade on a busy Friday night. While the details of the deal were yet to be finalized, the belief was that the trade was nothing more than a salary dump from the Mavs’ perspective, who are looking for wiggle room to make a run in free agency — most likely for point guard Kyle Lowry. Turns out, they got a bit more than added financial freedom.

The Athletic’s Shams Charania has reported that Moses will head to Dallas as part of the Richardson trade.

In 43 games with the Oklahoma City Thunder last season, Moses averaged 8.6 points and 8.9 rebounds in 21.4 minutes per game. Fittingly enough, one of his most prolific outings came against the Celtics back in March, where he scored 21 points and snagged 23 boards.

As for the Richardson, the soon-to-be 28-year-old will be joining his fourth team in as many years after back-to-back underwhelming campaigns. Having said that, the Tennessee product has flashed quality play as a two-way wing in the past, most notably in 2018 when he averaged career highs in points (16.6), rebounds (3.6) and assists (4.1) as a member of the Miami Heat.

Richardson’s arrival in Boston coincides with the potential exit of Evan Fournier, as negotiations between the sharpshooter and the Celtics are “close to stalling” due to pricey contract demands, per Boston Herald’s Mark Murphy.

Due to the flurry of moves made by president Brad Stevens, which includes the arrival of former No. 5 overall pick Kris Dunn and center Bruno Fernando, Boston now has “13 players with fully guaranteed contracts for next season and are around $3.2 million in guaranteed money below the projected luxury tax line of $136.6 million for the 2021-22 season,” according to front office insider Bobby Marks, via ESPN.

Kemba on the Move Again?

There has been a running debate in Boston ever since Walker was traded to Oklahoma City on whether or not the Celtics acted too early. Of course, recent rumblings of interest for the point guard from both Los Angeles teams (prior to the Russell Westbrook deal) certainly haven’t helped, via ESPN’s Zach Lowe. With that said, moving off of Walker’s monster contract was priority No. 1 in trade talks for the Celtics. They managed to do just that, so we can chalk that up as a win. Now it looks as if the team who inherited that contract is also looking to get out from under it.

“Oklahoma City is exploring potential deals for Kemba Walker,” tweeted Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix. “Walker, acquired last month from Boston, is owed $73 million over the next two seasons.”

Walker, 31, averaged 19.3 points and 4.9 assists for the Celtics in what was an injury-ridden 2020-21 season for the four-time All-Star.


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