With Kristaps Porzingis' long-term future with the New York Knicks potentially in flux, the Boston Celtics are among those interested in acquiring the Latvian big man, the New York Daily News' Stefan Bondy reported Tuesday.
The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Knicks team president Phil Jackson is considering trading Porzingis, with Arizona Wildcats forward Lauri Markkanen identified as a potential replacement.
Assuming the Knicks are willing to alienate a large part of their fanbase and deal their most promising young star, the Celtics would make a good trading partner.
After trading the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 draft, Boston now owns the No. 3 selection. The team also has an unprotected first-round pick in 2018 from the Brooklyn Nets and the Los Angele Lakers' first-rounder for next year, which comes with various protections.
ESPN's Chad Ford speculated what it might take to get Porzingis out of the Big Apple:
Chad Ford @chadfordinsider
If I was Danny Ainge I’d give the Knicks 3rd pick, Lakers pick and 1 player on my roster (Thomas, Bradley, Smart, Brown, etc.) for Porzingis2017-6-20 17:02:32
There's almost no way Knicks fans would receive a Porzingis trade well, but the team could at least spin it as a move for the future by getting multiple lottery picks.
For the Celtics, the allure of adding Porzingis is obvious. Boston would greatly benefit from adding a stretch 4 to line up alongside Al Horford in the frontcourt. The team ranked 14th in three-point percentage (35.9 percent).
Porzingis was a 35.7 percent shooter from beyond the arc, but his presence alone would help create open opportunities for teammates since opponents would have to respect his perimeter game.
At the very least, Porzingis would be an offensive upgrade over Amir Johnson and Jonas Jerebko, addressing one of the Celtics' biggest areas of need this summer.