Welcome to Boston.com’s Sports Q, our daily conversation, initiated by you and moderated by Chad Finn, about a compelling topic in Boston sports. Here’s how it works: You submit questions to Chad through Twitter, Facebook, and email. He’ll pick one each weekday to answer, then we’ll take the discussion to the comments. Chad will stop by several times per day to navigate. But you drive the conversation.
Kyrie’s leaving. Al is following him out there door. Where do the Celtics go from here? Does Danny Ainge have a Plan D, or E, or whatever this is? Help. – Sam L.
I wish I could help, Sam, but I’m really not sure either. Even though I basically wrote a “thanks for the memories, Al,” column this morning, I still hold out some hope that he returns. I mean, did you see the latest rumor, from Kevin O’Connor at The Ringer, that Dallas is the perceived frontrunner? Dallas? I guess they’ve got some hope with Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingas (if he has two decent knees), but I don’t know that it’s a much better situation than Boston. Dallas? I’d be cool with Horford joining the Clippers with Kawhi Leonard or something. But Dallas? That would be tough to take.
Anyway, about what’s left behind …
I suppose that the Celtics are fortunate to still be in an OK spot considering all that has gone wrong in recent months. Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, Gordon Hayward, Time Lord, a decent amount of cap room, and what, five first-round picks over the next two seasons … that’s not terrible. It’s not what it was supposed to be, but at least it will be interesting, and maybe more than that.
But I don’t have a sense now for players the Celtics might pursue, though I will say this: Anyone who suggests Chris Paul – who has a $44.2 million player option in 2021-22, when he’s 36 – as a solution is dabbling in fiction.
At least there will be some compelling rumors, like the one today from colleague Adam Himmelsbach that teams near the top of the draft might be poking around about Jaylen Brown. But I have no idea who Ainge will sign. I’m still lamenting who is leaving.
Have heard from a few places today that some teams near the top of the draft are wondering about Jaylen Brown's availability.
— Adam Himmelsbach (@AdamHimmelsbach) June 19, 2019
So what does everyone else think? What’s next for the Celtics? Who will they draft Thursday, and who should they sign or trade for, realistically? I’ll hear you in the comments.