During a Thursday interview with 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich, Ainge fielded a question about whether his mentality has changed due to the Celtics’ recent success or the potential vulnerability of Eastern Conference opponents. “I’m certainly aware of of our competition all around the East,” Ainge replied. “It’s not from a lack of desire to want to do a trade, but as an organization we have priorities and a plan. … We’re not looking for Band-Aids and we’re not looking to give up future assets. We’re trying to build something that is a little bit more sustainable than we are to rent a player.”
May 26, 2017 | 6:26 am EDT Update
The Celtics’ president of basketball operations appeared Thursday on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s “Toucher & Rich” and was asked to address a report from ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan that he considered trading his All-Star point guard to obtain another lottery pick ahead of the 2016 NBA Draft. Ainge not only shot down that rumor, but he also detailed why such a move would be foolhardy. “We had eight draft picks and were trying to consolidate our picks to move up or out of the draft,” Ainge said, via CBS Boston. “We were also making plans to go get (free agents) Kevin Durant and Al Horford, so why in the world would we go there without Isaiah Thomas and try to have our best player traded for a lottery pick? It just doesn’t make any sense at all.”
For Bogdanovic, finances are an especially key consideration. As a free agent not bound by the rookie contract (because he is three years removed from his draft class), the Kings can offer a multi-year deal and a substantially higher salary than the estimated $2.5 million year he earned this past season. Several sources within the league theorize that Bogdanovic would have been a top 10-15 pick in this upcoming draft, and believe that when the parties begin negotiating July 1, annual salary terms will range anywhere from $5 million to $10 million.
Despite going through the East playoffs at 12-1 and appearing destined for a rematch against the Golden State Warriors for months, the Cavs pushed off thoughts of what awaits them in Oakland next week. “I’m going to be honest, I’m not in the right mind to even talk about Golden State,” LeBron James said after scoring 35 points in the Cavs’ 135-102 Game 5 win over the Boston Celtics. “It’s too stressful, and I’m not stressed right now. I’m very happy about our accomplishment. Golden State, they’ve been the best team in our league for the last three years, and then they added an MVP (Kevin Durant). That’s all I can give you right now, because I’m happy and I don’t want to be stressed.”
LeBron James is now above Michael Jordan in one very important, objective area. On Thursday night against the Boston Celtics, LeBron passed Michael Jordan for the most playoff points scored in NBA history. James’ historic moment came in the third quarter of Game 5, with the Cavaliers up by double-digits.