The basketball rumor mill is in overdrive with the 2019 NBA Draft scheduled for Thursday night.
We've already seen one blockbuster trade agreement -- the Los Angeles Lakers giving up a ton of quality assets to acquire New Orleans Pelicans superstar center Anthony Davis -- and we could see more of these deals as teams look to pounce on the opportunity to win an NBA title with the Golden State Warriors roster being devastated by the recent injuries to Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson.
Let's take a look at all of the notable rumors and reports from Tuesday.
Here are the rumors involving the Celtics:
--Al Horford opts out, but in an unexpected twist, he's likely to leave Boston
Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald reports that after Al Horford opted out of his $30.1 million player option Tuesday and was reportedly discussing a new contract with the Celtics, he is now expected to sign a new deal elsewhere.
--Kyrie Irving has let Celtics know he's leaving, likely for Brooklyn
Kyrie is reportedly no longer "ghosting" the Celtics. In fact, according to a report from The Athletic, he has been "communicative and forthright" with the team since the season ended and signaled that he'll leave Boston, likely to sign with the Brooklyn Nets.
--Celtics eyeing trade for No. 4 pick?
ESPN's Jonathan Givony lists the Celtics among the teams that could look to trade up for the No. 4 pick. Who would be the Celtics' target with that selection? Vanderbilt guard Darius Garland is the guy. The Celtics do have the assets to trade up, but do they want to part with a player like Jaylen Brown, or the Memphis Grizzlies pick to get a deal done? The Pelicans, per Givony, are also "considering the possibility" of trading the No. 4 pick to the Atlanta Hawks for picks No. 8 and 10.
--Mike Conley an option for the Celtics?
Jordan Brenner of the Athletic reported Tuesday the Celtics "will be in on" Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley. The 31-year-old star averaged 21.1 points per game last year, but he'll make more than $32 million next season with an option for 2020-21 worth more than $34 million. Giving up top assets for Conley doesn't make a ton of sense for Boston.
--Bradley Beal the next star pursuit for the Celtics?
Washington Wizards shooting guard Bradley Beal could be a "prime option" for the Celtics after they failed to acquire New Orleans Pelicans superstar center Anthony Davis, per Brenner. Beal would not come cheap as a 25-year-old star signed for two more seasons. Beal and Celtics star Jayson Tatum are both from the St. Louis area and have known each other for a long time, so they likely would have great chemistry on and off the court.
Here are other rumors from around the NBA:
--James Harden and Chris Paul to break up?
Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo! Sports wrote a great piece detailing the relationship between Houston Rockets stars James Harden and Chris Paul, one that sources tell Goodwill is "unsalvageable." Goodwill reports that Paul requested a trade, but the veteran point guard refuted that claim in a comment on a Bleacher Report Instagram post. Rockets general manager Daryl Morey told Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle that Paul has not demanded a trade and will be on the team next season. Paul still has three more years remaining on a contract that carries an average annual salary of nearly $40 million, so it goes without saying that trading him will be quite difficult, especially given his age and declining skills.
--Kawhi Leonard's interest in Los Angeles
Wojnarowski reported an update on Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard's future, noting the reigning NBA Finals MVP's focus is on the Los Angeles Clippers, not the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers agreed to acquire New Orleans Pelicans center Anthony Davis via trade on Saturday, but they don't have enough salary cap space to sign Leonard unless he takes a discount.
--Kevin Love to remain in Cleveland?
ESPN's Brian Windhorst went on Cleveland radio station ESPN 850 WKNR and talked about the chances of Cavaliers forward Kevin Love being traded.
.@WindhorstESPN on whether Love will be back with the Cavs next year: "He's been out there in some trade talks, but it's hard to find the right deal for him...I'd say it's 50/50."— Aaron Goldhammer (@HammerNation19) June 18, 2019
Love signed a four-year, $120 million contract with the Cavs last summer, but his health is a concern going forward. He played in just 22 games last season and hasn't suited up for more than 60 games in a single season since 2015-16.
--Patrick Beverley drawing interest
Patrick Beverley is among the best defensive players expected to hit the open market, and The Sporting News' Sean Deveney reports the 30-year-old point guard will have meetings with several teams before sitting down with the Los Angeles Clippers.
Sources tell me Patrick Beverley--a sensible FA target of the Bulls and Lakers--will be taking meetings with as many as 5 teams BEFORE meeting with the Clippers in 2 weeks. Clippers will be chasing max-type FAs, but Beverley won't necessarily wait on an offer from them, I'm told.— Sean Deveney (@SeanDeveney) June 17, 2019
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