Why Boston Does It
This almost certainly is not the best haul that Boston could grab in exchange for a Kevin Garnett/Paul Pierce package, but it's one of the most interesting. Luol Deng's contract is expiring at the end of next season, but Carlos Boozer is still due $16.8 million in 2015, and the Celtics wouldn't be able to amnesty him.
It's a step to the side, instead of backwards, for Boston, as it wouldn't be bad enough to receive a high draft pick as long as talented players like Boozer and Deng are on board. Instead, what makes this deal so tantalizing is Charlotte's top-10 protected 2014 first-round pick, which becomes unprotected in 2016, that's in Chicago's possession.
Gazing down the line, Boston should be pretty bad by 2016. Combining Charlotte's first-round pick with their own could kick-start a rebuilding process right as LeBron James is peaking out.
Why Chicago Does It
For starters, Garnett and Pierce are better than Boozer and Deng, who is younger than Pierce and made the All-Star game over him last year, but the numbers point in Pierce's favor. Also, there's no way Deng could ever assume the type of offensive responsibility Pierce has over the past two years, especially in the playoffs.
Due to salary restrictions, Boozer and Deng won't be a part of Chicago's Joakim Noah/Derrick Rose title-contending window for much longer. Upgrading with two better short-term options to make a couple valiant runs at Miami might be wise.
A Garnett/Noah defensive front line would horrify offenses like a big shoe horrifies an ant. Pierce is still more than capable of playing elite team defense and rebounding well for his position. The two Celtics are more than familiar with Tom Thibodeau as a coach and tactician, having utilized his system on the road to two trips to the NBA Finals.
This would be Chicago going all-in and possibly having enough to become favorites in the Eastern Conference.