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The Anthony Davis-to-Boston rumors are not simply lame ideas blowing in the wind. They are backed by significant indicators that portend such a happening. As my first exhibit, I will offer the following pre-Kyrie Irving, pre-Gordon Hayward quotes from Celtics boss, Danny Ainge, prior to this past summer's action (per NESN's Ty Anderson):

"We have a lot of good players," Ainge noted, "but we need some great ones." "Just because you're one piece away doesn't mean you can get it,” Ainge admitted. “And if you force yourself to get it, and if you force a deal or force yourself to get the second-best available or the third- or fourth-best available player at that position that you need, then it might not make you that much better or make you still not good enough, and you're stuck.

That makes it clear that Ainge wants the very best players out there. Kyrie Irving fits that bill, and I believe Gordon Hayward will once he gets out on the floor. Certainly Anthony Davis is an absolutely-elite big man. Here comes Exhibit B (per CelticsLife's Brendan Ronan):

Referencing a comment made to him earlier in the night by his fellow Big Three member (Kevin Garnett), the old Celtic captain (Paul Pierce) was able to get an already rowdy crowd excited by noting that KG had told him his only regret was not coming to Boston five years earlier.

Paul's comment about Kevin regretting not coming to Boston years earlier apparently did not go unnoticed by Davis. Exhibit C is a video of The Brow mentioning Garnett's regret and the possible implications it might have for his own future. Exhibit D is an analysis of Davis' reaction to the Garnett lament (via NESN's Adam London):



It would be a stretch to say that Davis is wasting his talents in New Orleans, but it’s hard not imagine the heights he could reach playing for a legitimate championship contender. This thought apparently has crossed Davis’ mind as well. During an appearance on ESPN’s “The Jump,” Davis explained that he’s heard of star players like Kevin Garnett expressing regret for waiting too long to move on to a better situation suited for success. While Davis doesn’t appear overly concerned about the Pelicans’ future, it’s clear he’s wondered if the grass is greener on the other side. “When you hear that, it makes you think. I’m not going to lie, it makes you think because you wonder if you’re following in that same path,” Davis said.

Exhibit E is in Mark Van Deusen's tweet below:


In Exhibit F, Van Deusen also supplies his experienced view of what may be needed, in part, to make such a trade work:



I rest my case, and it was not presented as an absolute pitch for a future Davis acquisition. Rather, it was to show the solid indicators that such a trade may occur. Ainge is a summer trader, not an in-season one. The devastating DeMarcus Cousins injury could have a major impact on The Brow's tenure in Pelican-Land. He may decide to fly away while still in his youth and near the peak of his abilities. It could make sense.

Follow Tom at TomLaneHC

Photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports
Video via ESPN




Tom Lane 2/22/2018 09:31:00 AM Edit
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