Andre Drummond's rumored availability could spark Celtics interest
Andre Drummond’s name has popped up on the trade market over the last week or so, and the Celtics could be interested in taking a look at the young center. The Detroit Pistons are reportedly interested in trading away their prized assets - Reggie Jackson is also rumored to be available - but what they expect to receive in return is unknown.
Usually, when a name like Drummond’s comes up in trade talks during the off-season, teams are wary of their availability. Yet, Drummond’s play in the last year was nothing too concerning to throw potential suitors off. He led the league in offensive and total rebounds, a stat that will catch the eye of Danny Ainge due to the Celtics’ struggles in that area. He also had a respectable PER score of 20.3, which is higher than another potential Celtics target, Paul George.
Drummond’s defensive impact is another reason why Boston may be interested in acquiring him. With the likely departure of Amir Johnson, there will be a space opening up in the front court for a player who can have a similar effect on that end. The Piston youngster ranked third in defensive shares, and averaged 1.1 blocks a game.
One factor which goes against Drummond, however, is his hefty contract. Even in this age of expensive deals being handed out to the wrong players, Drummond’s is one which several teams will be unwilling to take on. Just last summer, he signed a five-year deal worth $130 million. The reason Detroit committed so much of their cap to the 23-year-old was due to his potential, with many predicting him to become a perennial All-Star.
Drummond’s case was helped by the fact he was named an All-Star in 2016, but the lack of progress and development made on his offensive game has made him a liability at times. He held the worst free throw shooting percentage across the league for all players who played at least 50 games with38.6%. As impressive as he is on one side of the court, his flaws offensively can’t be ignored, such as the lack of spacing he provides due to his reluctance to attack the basket.
The Celtics can surely use Drummond's help on the defensive and rebounding side, but at his price, and the assets required to bring him in, they would be wise to look at cheaper alternatives.
Credit to Kyle Terada/USA Today Sports (top) & Getty Images (bottom) for the photos
All stats courtesy of basketballreference.com