Kyrie Irving to Celtics, Isiah Thomas to Cavs

Maveric

In the Rotation
Cavaliers send Kyrie Irving to Celtics in deal including Isaiah Thomas, Nets 2018 pick


10:21 AM CT
Jeff Goodman and Adrian Wojnarowski

The Boston Celtics have acquired All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving from the Cleveland Cavaliers for point guard Isaiah Thomas, forward Jae Crowder, center Ante Zizic and Brooklyn's 2018 unprotected first-round pick, the teams announced Tuesday night.

Irving, 25, requested a trade during a July meeting with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert. At the time, Irving said that he wanted to play in a situation in which he could be more of a focal point and that he no longer wanted to play alongside LeBron James, sources said.

Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge noted the bittersweet nature of Tuesday's trade.

"This has obviously been a roller coaster of a day for us, trading away Isaiah and Jae and Ante, especially Isaiah and Jae, who have been such a big part of our team and our success and our Celtic culture as leaders of our team. Very, very difficult day," Ainge said. "At the same time, a very exciting time [to add] one of the best offensive players in the league."

Ainge said that it was a very tough phone call to inform Thomas, who had emerged as the face of the franchise since he arrived at the trade deadline in February 2015.

The Cleveland Cavaliers waited for the right deal after Kyrie Irving's trade demand, and they found it with their biggest rival in the Eastern Conference.

Ainge also said the Celtics did their homework on Irving after his falling out with James in Cleveland and said Irving is "excited" to be joining the Celtics. Ainge also acknowledged that Irving's price tag was high.

"It is a high price tag," he said. "But acquiring a 25-year-old perennial All-Star, a player that fits a timeline for us and is a fantastic offensive player, one of the best offensive players in the league, you have to pay a heavy price."

Pressed on the difficulty of giving up the unprotected Brooklyn pick, Ainge noted, "We valued it from the time we got it, and it's still very valuable. Obviously, we value Kyrie more. It's that simple."

Irving has three years and $60 million left on his contract, but he can opt out of the final year before the 2019-20 season. The Celtics posted on Instagram that Irving will wear No. 11, as his familiar No. 2 is retired in Boston for Red Auerbach.

Thomas, 28, led the Celtics to the best record in the Eastern Conference last season, averaging 28.9 points and 5.9 assists over 33.8 minutes per game during the regular season.

Thomas has spent the offseason recovering from a right hip injury that kept him out of the final three games of the Eastern Conference finals. He opted not to have surgery.

Ainge said Thomas' injury did play "some" into his making the deal. Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Monday that he is not sure Thomas will be ready for the start of training camp.

Sources told ESPN that while Cleveland is not sure when Thomas will be able to return to the court, the Cavaliers have no short-term concerns about the injury. The team, sources said, is anxious to have its own doctors look at Thomas' hip and will spend the year monitoring it.

Thomas will become a free agent at the end of the 2017-18 season. He has said that he believes he's worthy of a maximum contract.

Crowder, 27, has been a core piece of the Celtics' resurgence. A solid perimeter defender, the forward averaged 13.9 points and 5.8 rebounds last season. He also has one of the friendliest cap numbers in the NBA: $6.8 million, $7.3 million and $7.8 million the next three seasons. He does not become a free agent until the summer of 2020.

Zizic was the Celtics' first-round pick in 2016 (23rd overall). He's a highly regarded 20-year-old out of Croatia described by ESPN's Fran Fraschilla as "one of my favorite kids in this draft. He's 6-11, 240. He has a mean streak." In addition to his tremendous upside, Zizic was included for salary purposes.

Irving waived a $5.8 million trade kicker -- 15 percent of the total money remaining on his Cleveland deal -- to join Boston, sources said.

The trade will give Cleveland $29.1 million in tax savings. Cleveland's tax is now $49.3 million, down from $78.4 million.

The Celtics and Cavaliers open the season against each other Oct. 17 in Cleveland.

"Opening night should be interesting," a Cavs player who requested anonymity told ESPN.
 

Maveric

In the Rotation
I have absolutley no clue how to feel about this just yet. Kyrie's got an injury history. But he is an awesome talent, and any time you can make a Blue Devil into a Celtic it's a win for me. But damn, that's a lot. Unless they win the title. Then it's perfect. My head hurts from all this back and forth...
 

theoneandonly

Draft Pick
With the super team in Oakland, the NBA season and playoffs is a forgone conclusion barring injury. The only real reason to watch is to see who might be 3-5 years away IMO.
 

icup

Super Moderator
love kyrie.

you can't pay thomas a max contract so they got themselves out of that and replaced him with a better player. i hope thomas stays healthy and performs well for cleveland because he was great while he was in boston. he was the ultimate underdog and boston sports fans love that shit. i really enjoyed his moments over the last couple of seasons. played the day after his sister died. dude bled green.

fuck jae crowder. he shrinks in the playoffs and i'm sick of the regular season tommy-point heros. we need playoff performers.

that brooklyn pick will be tough to swallow if it turns into a superstar.
 
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NYGiantsX4

Spectator
I'm a C's fan, and this trade will pay off dividends for us. I think we finally get over the hump this year and crush Cleveland.
 

icup

Super Moderator
just heard this morning that cleveland is now trying to trade the brooklyn pick they just got from boston for kyrie.
 

Maveric

In the Rotation
just heard this morning that cleveland is now trying to trade the brooklyn pick they just got from boston for kyrie.
Always figured they'd trade it, but they'll get a heck of a lot more for it if they actually wait for Brooklyn to officially suck for the complete season...
 

icup

Super Moderator
trading the pick to get a player now while you have lebron on your team is the way to go.

but if cleveland isn't sure if lebron is staying beyond 2017-18, then i would think that keeping the pick should also be a consideration.
 

Maveric

In the Rotation
trading the pick to get a player now while you have lebron on your team is the way to go.

but if cleveland isn't sure if lebron is staying beyond 2017-18, then i would think that keeping the pick should also be a consideration.
For me, it's too much chance to trade it. If the pick is top 3, then you either screw yourself out of a top draft pick to center the team around if Lebron leaves, or of trading it for a possible windfall as opposed to what you're probably going to get for it now when it's a for the most part unknown quantity.
 

icup

Super Moderator
fuck you guys the celtics are the best !!!




SPIDERFAN COME BACK BUDDY !!!! .. CELTICS GOING TO FINALS W KYRIE AND HAYWARD LEST GOOOOOOOO





 

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