Sources told ESPN that the Celtics, to date, have been rebuffed in their efforts to assemble a sufficiently enticing deal to acquire any of these four prime targets: Chicago Bulls All-Star swingman Jimmy Butler, Utah Jazz guard Gordon Hayward and Milwaukee Bucks teammates Jabari Parker or Khris Middleton.
I figured Ainge would at least put out out feelers on Hayward and Parker as well. Unfortunately while the #3 pick has value, it doesn't have enough value to bring in a young star. Sure if there was a 32 year old Ray Allen on the block, he could be acquired, but to get players like Butler, Parker, or Hayward, the Celtics would have needed to get a top 2 pick. Celtics fans love players like Bradley, Crowder, and Smart, but unfortunately around the league they don't have that strong trade value.
Also of note from Marc Stein is more from the one team willing to deal with the Celtics:
The Philadelphia 76ers, sources say, have been trying for some time to convince the Celtics to part with the No. 3 pick in a deal headlined by Sixers big man Jahlil Okafor or teammate Nerlens Noel, but Boston, to date, has resisted those pitches.
The Okafor rumor has been around for awhile, but previously we heard that Ainge preferred Noel (as he should). Stein makes it seem that the 76ers have actually given in and offered Noel for the 3rd pick, which would be a new wrinkle. I would love to see the 76ers get desperate enough to trade for Kris Dunn that they offer Noel and their 2017 1st for #3 and #16 (or #23).
The Celtics aren't trading the 3rd pick for Okafor. That would be idiotic right now - Philly has a big man logjam and zero trade leverage.— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) June 22, 2016