The Boston Celtics didn't make a move ahead of Thursday's NBA trade deadline, but that doesn't mean their roster is completely finished.
The buyout market is the last place for contending teams to upgrade their rosters before the playoffs, and a few quality players could find themselves available in the coming weeks.
One of the most intriguing players who could be bought out is Cleveland Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson. The Cavs reportedly made Thompson available before the trade deadline but couldn't find a suitor for the 28-year-old center. Cleveland made a surprising move before the deadline to acquire Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond, who's pretty similar to Thompson skill-wise. Therefore, Drummond's presence makes Thompson pretty expendable.
Would the Celtics be interested in Thompson if he's bought out? ESPN's Brian Windhorst discussed that scenario during Thursday's episode of "The Jump".
Brian Windhorst on ESPN's "The Jump" this afternoon: "I think the chances of a Tristan Thompson buyout have increased dramatically. That means if you're a fan of the Boston Celtics, your ears perk way up right now. The Boston Celtics would be major in the market for that guy."— Boston.com Celtics News (@BDCCeltics) February 6, 2020
A buyout of Thompson is not guaranteed, however. The Athletic's David Aldridge reported Thursday that Thompson won't be bought out. It's worth noting things could change, but the decision ultimately is Cleveland's.
League source says there will be no buyout for Tristan Thompson in Cleveland, and that he will play out the season with the Cavs before hitting free agency this summer.— David Aldridge (@davidaldridgedc) February 6, 2020
Thompson is averaging 11.9 points and 10.4 rebounds per game for the Cavaliers this season. He's a very good rebounder, he's a quality interior defender, and he would give the Celtics another big body to defend the likes of Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid in a potential playoff series.
The Celtics don't have a glaring weakness on their roster, and that's why not making a trade before Thursday's deadline isn't a huge deal. Adding some depth in the frontcourt through the buyout wouldn't hurt, though, and Thompson would be an ideal target for Boston if he becomes available.
Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of the NBA trade deadline. Thursday at 7 p.m., tune into our Celtics Trade Deadline Special with Mike, Kyle, Scal, Chris & Sherrod plus an interview with Danny Ainge.