Celtics

Hornets likely moving on from former 2015 No. 9 pick Frank Kaminsky, a pick tied to the C's

Hornets likely moving on from former 2015 No. 9 pick Frank Kaminsky, a pick tied to the C's

During the 2015 NBA Draft, the Boston Celtics desperately wanted to move up. Armed with plenty of draft capital over the course of the next few drafts, Danny Ainge and the Celtics reportedly tried to move up into the top 10. Their target in that class? Duke's Justise Winslow.

One of the teams that the Celtics engaged in trade talks with was the Charlotte Hornets. The Hornets had the No. 9 pick and per Chris Forsberg (then with ESPN, now with NBC Sports Boston), the Celtics offered as many as six draft picks and four first-round picks to move up and get Winslow.

The Hornets declined. Instead, they took Wisconsin center Frank Kaminsky. And four years later, they are likely regretting that decision.

Per Rod Boone of The Athletic, the Hornets are choosing not to extend a qualifying offer to Kaminsky after four seasons with the team.

Kaminsky's departure does have a minor effect on the Hornets' cap space, but the team has only $5 million in practical cap space without Kaminsky, and that's without re-signing either Kemba Walker or Jeremy Lamb. So, it's still going to be hard for Charlotte to bring back Walker and improve the team around him.

And that's a positive for the Celtics, who are rumored to be the frontrunners for Walker's services at the moment.

During his time in Charlotte, Kaminsky averaged 9.8 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 1.6 assists per game. He only has shot 42 percent (35 from behind the arc) during his career.

The player the Celtics would have picked, Winslow, has averaged 12.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 4.3 assists while shooting 43 percent from the field (37 from 3-point range) while playing with the Miami Heat. He has been solid, but his talent still pales in comparison to some of the other assets that that Celtics were able to unearth with their treasure trove of assets, including Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.

Safe to say, it's definitely a good thing for Boston that the Celtics-Hornets deal didn't end up coming to fruition.

What's next for C's after becoming frontrunners for Kemba?>>>

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Handicapping the NBA's Eastern Conference before the 2019-20 season

Handicapping the NBA's Eastern Conference before the 2019-20 season

The Eastern Conference hasn't been easy to figure out in recent seasons, as the conference has seen some massive power shifts in each of the past two offseasons.

During the 2018 offseason, LeBron James left the Cleveland Cavaliers to join the Los Angeles Lakers. The ensuing move left the Cavaliers as a bottom dweller in the conference while teams like the Philadelphia 76ers, Milwaukee Bucks, and the Toronto Raptors rose to the top. Meanwhile, the star-studded and deep Boston Celtics failed to live up to lofty expectations.

Now, the Raptors don't look as strong despite winning the 2019 NBA title. They lost Kawhi Leonard and their potential fall has created another opening atop the Eastern Conference. Will teams like the 76ers and Bucks step up into the No. 1 spot? And can a new-look Celtics squad rise up once again? The East will be unpredictable, but here's a look at the state of the conference ahead of the 2019-20 campaign.

Click here for Chris Forsberg and A. Sherrod Blakely's Eastern Conference expectations>>>

Boston trims roster, Javonte Green appears to win final spot

Boston trims roster, Javonte Green appears to win final spot

The Boston Celtics waived Max Strus, Kaiser Gates, and Yante Maten on Saturday, trimming their roster to the regular-season limit of 17.

With the moves, summer league standout Javonte Green appears to have clinched the team’s 15th roster spot. Gates and Maten will have a chance to latch on with the Maine Red Claws as affiliated players after they clear waivers.

The Celtics signed Strus to a 2-way deal after he went undrafted then promoted him to the 15-man roster earlier this week on a partially guaranteed deal. That opened a 2-way slot to sign 7-foot-7 Tacko Fall.

Strus played well late in the exhibition slate and made 5 of his 12 3-point attempts overall. The combination of Fall’s potential and his popularity forced the team to maneuver. With help from his springy hops, Green made 16 of his 20 shots in the preseason and showed an ability to be an aggressive perimeter defender, helping him edge Strus in the competition for the final spot on the parent roster.

The Celtics open the regular season on Wednesday night in Philadelphia.

FORSBERG: What does Pascal Siakam's deal mean for Jaylen Brown?>>>

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