Celtics

NBA rumors: Celtics not only team interested in trading for No. 4 pick

NBA rumors: Celtics not only team interested in trading for No. 4 pick

The New Orleans Pelicans appear to have several potential suitors for the No. 4 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, a selection they acquired as part of the Anthony Davis trade with the Los Angeles Lakers over the weekend.

The Boston Celtics reportedly are interested in acquiring the No. 4 pick, but they aren't alone. The Atlanta Hawks, the only team besides the Pelicans with multiple top-10 picks, also covet the No. 4 selection. Here's the latest update on the Hawks' pursuit of moving up in the lottery.

The Celtics have three first-round picks at No. 14, No. 20 and No. 22. Those selections obviously don't have as much value as Atlanta's first-rounders, but the C's also have talented young players (including Jaylen Brown) and future picks (including a valuable Memphis Grizzlies protected first-rounder) to offer in potential trade packages for the No. 4 selection.

LISTEN AND SUBSCRIBE TO OUR CELTICS TALK PODCAST

Boston reportedly is targeting Vanderbilt guard Darius Garland if it were to acquire the No. 4 pick. The other popular names for that range in the draft include Duke guard R.J. Barrett, North Carolina guard Coby White, Texas Tech guard Jarrett Culver and Virginia forward DeAndre Hunter. Duke forward Zion Williamson and the Murray State guard Ja Morant are the consensus top two picks. 

The 2019 draft class has been labeled as top heavy by many experts, so it's not surprising teams outside the top five are looking to move up.

Trading up in the lottery isn't the only path for the Celtics to pursue before the draft happens Thursday night. They reportedly "will be in on" a possible Mike Conley trade, and Washington Wizards shooting guard Bradley Beal reportedly is a "prime option" for Boston following its failure to acquire Davis from the Pelicans.

Click for the biggest winners and losers of the Anthony Davis trade>>>

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Kyrie Irving was mulling Celtics exit in December, Spencer Dinwiddie says

Kyrie Irving was mulling Celtics exit in December, Spencer Dinwiddie says

In early October 2018, Kyrie Irving stood in front of a TD Garden crowd and said he planned on re-signing with the Boston Celtics the following offseason.

Two months later, he already was plotting a move elsewhere.

That's according to Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie, who told The Athletic's Shams Charania that Irving contacted him in December about the possibility of playing in New York for the Knicks or Nets.

"The first time he reached out was maybe like December, in terms of loosely talking about it, because he was still focused on his season and everything," Dinwiddie said.

Dinwiddie had befriended Irving in September when the two attended a Harvard Business School course together. And when Irving contacted him, the Nets guard got the sense he may be open to leaving Boston.

"You could just tell from the conversation that it was a little bit different," Dinwiddie said. "... Actually, it definitely was December because he made a comment to me, he was like, 'New York might be real fun next year,' because I hadn't signed yet. ... That's when I was first tipped off to the whole thing."

Dinwiddie had yet to sign his contract extension with Brooklyn at the time, but after landing the deal on Dec. 13, he embarked on a campaign to convince Irving and Kevin Durant to come to the Nets instead of joining the Knicks.

The 26-year-old said he spoke to Irving "a ton" about Brooklyn's style of play, a family-oriented organizational mindset under general manager Sean Marks and a top-notch training staff.

"Of course I'm going to be like, 'Bro, it's perfect for you,' " Dinwiddie added. " ' And (head coach) Kenny (Atkinson) gonna let you rock.' "

Irving apparently managed to keep his intentions from the Celtics for a few more months, as president of basketball operations Danny Ainge said he didn't get the sense his point guard was leaving until March or April.

But Dinwiddie's revelation is proof that Irving either soured on the C's very quickly or was simply being disingenuous in October.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Grant Williams confirms new Celtics jersey number on Instagram story

Grant Williams confirms new Celtics jersey number on Instagram story

The Boston Celtics' roster is starting to take shape, which means one thing: It's time for the rookies to pick their real jersey numbers.

Grant Williams, who originally was assigned No. 40 with the Celtics, had digit decisions on the mind early Monday morning -- and may have settled on a choice.

Here's a screenshot from the No. 22 overall' pick's Instagram story:

Williams wore No. 2 at Tennessee, but that's not an option in Boston, where No. 2 is retired for legendary team president and coach Red Auerbach. It sounds like Williams is intent on taking No. 12, though.

That number is certainly available after Terry Rozier signed with the Charlotte Hornets in free agency this summer. No. 12 has gotten quite the use, too: 33 players have worn the number -- including Jerry Sichting, Dominique Wilkins, Chris Herren and Ricky Davis -- making it the most-used number in team history.

Williams played well enough in NBA Summer League to earn himself an official contract with Boston, and it seems he's ready to become a "real" member of the team by snagging the uniform of his choosing.

UPDATE (Wednesday, July 17, 3 p.m. ET): Williams indeed will wear No. 12 for the Celtics this season, according to the latest update on his Instagram story.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.