After reportedly missing on Vucevic, Gordon, is Ainge still ‘Trader Danny’?

Maybe we should reassess the popular label ‘Trader Danny’ for Boston Celtics group president Danny Ainge after news the previous Celtic star and present basic supervisor wound up losing out on not just widely-reported 2021 trade target Aaron Gordon of the Orlando Magic, however likewise their All-Star center Nikola Vucevic, according to the Boston World’s Adam Himmelsbach.

While these Monday early morning quarterbacking analyses need to be drawn from the perspective that we never ever truly understand how the trade settlements went, the familiar refrain of simply how close Ainge got to an offer is a trope as stagnant as Boston’s late-game offense has actually remained in current weeks.

Which is to state, really.

However that likewise does not imply there’s not a kernel of fact to it because regardless of some genuinely outstanding navigating on the trade front early in his profession to land very first Ray Allen and after that Kevin Garnett and a smattering of strong relocations because, it’s been numerous seasons because Ainge has actually handled an offer that definitively moves the group towards its objectives of contention. His apologists will indicate returning in the draft to land Tatum. However, he had the very first choice to work with and has very little to reveal from the extra worth produced by the choice to date offered Romeo Langford has yet to play a half-season of basketball in approximately 3 times that cover.

Even Ainge’s last major deadline trade for Isaiah Thomas in 2015 — widely seen as a major coup — has largely been frittered away by the failure to account for the potential foro top-tier talent to walk away in free agency. What’s worse, he even involved assets from the 2013 trade with the Brooklyn Nets — another piece of the “Trader Danny” legend, and justly so — in that error by dealing for Kyrie Irving in the very first place. Cases have been made for having simply cut the losses Boston had and moving forward with the picks instead, which other teams with ostensibly lesser front offices on the whole have turned into far more useful players.

Add in that since that defensible mistake with Irving, the Celtics president has had two extra opportunities to try a different route in being more conservative with elite talent in Al Horford and Gordon Hayward, yet chose the same path with the same route. And then did it again with the hail-Mary traded player exception produced by Hayward’s departure at this due date. Evan Fournier for two first-round picks is an excellent deal in a vacuum, but this team wasn’t built in one; the hoard of riches Ainge once guarded has actually trickled slowly into what may well be the bare minimum a title contender can be assembled with.

A lot of that depends on what happens with Fournier and his expiring deal long-term as much as it may with Kemba Walker’s health and prospective tradeability. As much as it may Robert Williams III’s hip health and the growth of his many young players. On one hand Ainge has been reticent to move elite skill, presumably reasoning the diminished returns one often receives isn’t worth the risk of resigning.

But on the other he seems to have been far too reticent to deal draft picks to make up for past mistakes, or to land truly impactful talents like Paul George, Nikola Vucevic or Aaron Gordon that wouldn’t necessarily have required giving up elite talent. It comes down to a difference of philosophy it seems, and while no one is suggesting Ainge is an executive 25 times in the league wouldn’t leap at the opportunity to hire, it’s worth asking if perhaps a more conservative approach to retaining elite talent (or the possessions they will get) once an extension is off the table is warranted progressing. This post initially appeared on Celtics Wire. Follow us on Facebook! [lawrence-related id=48298,48269,48259,48244] [listicle id=48305]



Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.