NBA Rumors: Boston Celtics Would Be Wise to Acquire O.J. Mayo
The Boston Celtics need a capable scorer in the backcourt to pair with Rajon Rondo. Avery Bradley is a defensive specialist, but lacks offensive prowess. E'Twaun Moore has potential, but is vastly unproven.
O.J. Mayo would be a perfect fit and relatively cost-efficient. According to A. Sherrod Blakely of csnne.com, the Celtics are interested in potential sign-and-trade scenario involving Brandon Bass and Mayo.
A league source said the C's continue to be enamored with the 6-foot-5 shooting guard, and are considering making another run at him. The source said no deal is imminent, but it appears the Celtics are willing to offer up Brandon Bass via a sign and trade.
Danny Ainge would be wise to pull the trigger on this deal. The Celtics selected Jared Sullinger with the No. 21 selection in Thursday night's NBA draft. Bass is expendable, and Boston doesn't have a player like Mayo to speak of.
Blakely also spoke to the financial side of Bass' contract.
While he indicated that his first preference is to return to Boston with a multi-year deal, he will be looking for a significant bump in salary from the $4.25 million he made this past season. It was initially believed that Bass would be seeking a similar deal to former Celtic Glen Davis' four-year, $26 million contract.
A desperate team could pay O.J. Mayo $6 million to $8 million. He made a little over $5.5 million last season, and he averaged just over 12 points per game. Any team that severely lacks scoring from the wing could overpay for his services.
Boston, especially if Ray Allen doesn't return, is that team. Even if Allen does come back, youth must be served in Beantown.
Mayo is a potentially dynamic scorer. He played nearly 27 minutes per contest this year, but still managed to average double digits. He provided Memphis with instant offense and a spark plug off the bench, but he is suited for a change of scenery.
He's a starter, at least in terms of talent. He can play either guard position, and he's a scrappy defender. His athleticism would give Boston a boost on both ends of the floor, and his numbers could increase with the added attention given to his game.
The addition of Jared Sullinger makes Bass easy to move. Bass is a solid player, but his mid-range production isn't that much different than what Sullinger will provide down low.
Moving Bass' steady play for a potentially dynamic scorer is Boston's best-case scenario. It would be a financially-responsible way to get younger and more explosive without really giving up anything in return.
Mayo's perimeter shooting would complement Rajon Rondo's pass-and-kick game, but he's also capable of getting to the rim himself. We've never been able to see what he's really capable of (because of his playing situation). He could explode with starter's minutes. He's used to the limelight, and the bright lights of Boston would be ideal.
The Celtics' age is well-documented. They must get younger, but they can't do it just for the sake of doing it.
Mayo is only 24 years old, and he still has reasonable upside.
Boston has another Bass already in place, but they don't have anyone close to Mayo on their current roster. It's time to change that.
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