Trade Rumors

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Ainge did admit the team could use a rim protector this offseason, but it won’t be as simple as adding just one piece. “I’m always leery of saying what we need because you don’t just go find a good rim protector, because you lose something. We were the fourth-best defense in the NBA without a rim protector,” he said of the 2015-16 team. “Sometimes you get a rim protector and it hurts your offense. We have some good players, but I think we have to add a few more.”
Ainge also believes Boston should be seen as a viable option for free agents, but cautions that most teams have just as much money to spend in what should be a wild offseason around the league. “There is a lot of money out there because of the new TV contract that is kicking it. It’s going to be challenge and is sort of a new territory for the NBA. I think two-thirds of the league can offer at least one max contract, which has never happened before. We’re a team that can offer two max contracts, but there aren’t that many max contract players on the market. The competition is going to be fierce,” said Ainge. “We have plans that we would like to do and what we’ll do everything we can to try and do, but there are no guarantees in any of that. It’s my job to pull the brakes back and make sure we don’t do something stupid that will hurt our team in the long run.”
Ainge: “Ownership would like to see something happen faster and I know my coaches and players want to see something faster. I’ve been in their positions and I get it, I want to see something faster too. But I have to protect us from doing something irrational from doing something that gets us a little bit better. If it’s something that gets us to being a true championship contender faster, we’re all for it. As long as it’s a sustainable formula and not a one-year quick hit, sacrificing future assets,” he said. “Everything depends on how much money a player wants, how many assets you have to give up to get that person. There are a lot of what ifs, and that’s what we’ll be doing the next six weeks, trying to figure out what’s available to us. The things we like to do we still have to find partners for, which is very challenging.”
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It would be different, perhaps, if the Raptors simply had their own late-first round selection because that would limit the possibilities. But having a lottery pick brings a whole new group of players into the mix. “Everyone talks about (the ninth pick) and yeah, it feels great, but now we have to make the pick,” Ujiri said. “Now we have to do something with it. Whether that is make the pick or trade the pick or whatever it is, I think this is a good, good asset for our organization and something else to add to what we already have.”
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“Ownership would like to see something happen faster and I know my coaches and players want to see something faster. I’ve been in their positions and I get it, I want to see something faster too. But I have to protect us from doing something irrational from doing something that gets us a little bit better. If it’s something that gets us to being a true championship contender faster, we’re all for it. As long as it’s a sustainable formula and not a one-year quick hit, sacrificing future assets,” Ainge told WBZ-TV’s Dan Roche on Sunday night’s Sports Final.
“Listen, the partners we did business with [in 2007], in Seattle we found someone who was moving in a different direction. They were a team in the lottery drafting young players, they had new management, so it was a win-win. The same for Minnesota; they had been in the lottery two years in a row and they got a really good young asset in Al Jefferson,” explained Ainge. “Al was the best young player being offered to them at the time, so it was a win-win for both situations. Typically, I don’t think it’s someone pulling something over on someone. It’s finding someone who is looking to make a change, and we have a lot of assets for a team looking to take a step back and get some good young players, to give us a player that is more ready.”