So long, Isaiah.
If your immediate reaction was “That’s way too much!,” I couldn’t agree more. How did Cleveland come away with Ante Zizic and the Nets pick, as well as Isaiah and Crowder, who were obviously gonna be included if a deal happened, anyway???
Here’s the problem: Kyrie Irving was not that much better than Isaiah Thomas last year, . In no way am I saying that 28-year-old Isaiah Thomas for 1 year is a better asset than 25-year-old Kyrie Irving with 2 years left on his, but the difference between the two isn’t worth Crowder, Zizic, AND a pick that is practically guaranteed to be top 10 next year.
Also, how is nobody mentioning that now the Celtics have no one to guard LeBron or Durant? Sure, Crowder was not exactly the wingman version of Gary Payton in his prime, but I’d feel a lot better about an Eastern Conference Finals with Crowder on the team than not on the team.
Ultimately, what this means is that Danny Ainge is betting against Isaiah’s hip and his fight against regression, betting against Crowder as a stopper, betting against Zizic as the rebounding help they need, and betting against Brooklyn being the worst in the league again. When your team has had all of these assets for awhile, you tend to get attached to them, and I love the fact that Danny Ainge is more cold blooded than I am about his assets.
But this was just a little too much. This trade doesn’t make the Celtics automatically better than the Cavs this year (who suddenly have the perfect guy to guard Gordon Hayward if LeBron is shutting down someone else), and it’s hard to see them being better in the next 2-8 years with the loss of Crowder and his amazing contract, a young, promising big, and a top 10 pick.
Also, there’s the little problem that Phoenix wouldn’t even trade Josh Jackson and Eric Bledsoe for this dude. Now the C’s traded way more. Fantastic.
All in all, I should be happier about the Celtics getting the guy who hit this shot. But I’m not. Danny Ainge is a master poker player, but occasionally, even Doyle Brunson bets too much on a hand. Ainge just made the same mistake.