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Celtics Mailbag: Trade tweaks, Jaylen Brown's super max implications, Malcolm Brogdon's role


We organize a weekly mailbag during the Celtics season. If you have any questions about the Celtics or NBAE-mail or tweet @briantrobb

I think most of us are cheering on Jaylen Brown to make All-NBA, but should we be? If he qualifies for the super max, wouldn’t that restrict the team in terms of retaining or acquiring other players? — Ed

This is a fair question and largely depends on the purchasing power of the property. I guess the most important thing to consider first is that the only way Jaylen Brown signs an extension this offseason is if he becomes eligible for that super max extension. Otherwise, it’s far better to wait financially for free agency to maximize their earnings (the Cs can’t offer them the maximum in an extension otherwise). So if you want Brown to be secure as a long-term Celtic as soon as possible, having him make All-NBA is the most direct path.

That said, Brown being on a super-max would certainly take a huge chunk of the team’s payroll for the next five-plus years (35% of the cap) and that would prevent the Celtics from having substantial until his and Tatum. contract expires. That’s not necessarily a reason to object (would you rather have a ceiling room or Jaylen Brown?), but the bigger question is probably the spending in the luxury tax for future seasons. Every team has some kind of budget, and Brown being on the biggest possible contract could conceivably limit some spending in future seasons as the luxury tax penalties add up. There’s also an argument to be made that Brown wouldn’t be worthy of a super-max deal (similar to Bradley Beal in Washington), so it would be a very worthwhile negotiation if given the opportunity. I’d bet against that as the competition is very stiff for All-NBA this year, but Brown’s consistent play certainly puts him in the conversation. Brown getting that kind of deal shouldn’t limit what Boston can do as long as the property is willing to spend.

Would the Cs consider returning Brogdon, giving PP more minutes and gaining a near-elite wing? —Boston native

Brogdon had been brutal last month before a great rebounding performance in the win over Dallas, but I see no script when he’s on the move this year. The Celtics cashed in a few chips to get him in (Aaron Nesmith, first-round pick) and he picked Boston over other suitors (Toronto) in the offseason, so it wouldn’t be a good idea for the team. to move it. He’s also a proven playoff performer who played phenomenally in the first month of the year before his recent slip. Positionally, the Celtics could use some wing depth behind their stars (any team would want that), but Brogdon isn’t going to be looking for that in the trade market. He has an expensive contract for his age/production and that’s not going to give Boston a promising comeback in a trade, certainly not a comparable wing.

Payton Pritchard certainly deserves more minutes, but moving Brogdon just isn’t a realistic way for him to get more for this season anyway. He’ll stay deep for now.

Hello Brian! Do you think it’s time to put Robert Williams back in the starting lineup, and do you think they’ll scour the trade and buyout market to shore up the wing or big depth? Do you have targets in mind? Do you think they should reduce the rotation a bit to 8? —Eddy FB

I think if the team has continued to struggle, the departure of Rob Williams must be a consideration. A resounding win over Dallas on Thursday night will calm concerns for now, but last year’s starting five should get more consistent minutes in the coming weeks just to see how it looks compared to last year. I would also argue in some games that Williams might be the better option than Horford to start if Joe Mazzulla commits to playing a big game, but I highly doubt that’s an option being considered this year.

I really think they will be scouring the trade/repurchase market looking for great wing depth and it will be interesting to see if they use any of their TPEs given the heavy financial implications of the tax luxury. I like to stay with nine players in the rotation, although it seems that in recent weeks Mazzulla has reduced it to eight in the second half as Sam Hauser’s shot has gone down.

Brother, we need another goalscorer, we have two elite goalscorers and a potential elite goalscorer on the bench. need to add type malik beasley. when are we going to pull the trigger and ship Smart? he can’t be the deciding factor in big games —cfbhoops

Smart isn’t going anywhere, like any other significant member of the team’s rotation right now for a group that sits at the top of the NBA. Brad Stevens and company will be looking to add rather than subtract in the coming weeks. A guy like Beasley would certainly help, but his contract is way too expensive for the Celtics to consider when they already have Brogdon coming off the bench.

Please send your Celtics or NBA questions for future mail to or tweet @briantrobb



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