The Boston Celtics might find themselves involved in trade rumors for players such as Blake Griffin and Russell Westbrook, but the reality is much simpler.
The Celtics just want some shooting.
It’s the minimum requirement to cap off the offseason, at least according to Sporting News’ Sean Deveney:
SMall bit of @celtics news … Still looking for shooters, source said they reached out to free-agent Chase Budinger.
— Sean Deveney (@SeanDeveney) July 14, 2016
Budinger, now 28 years old, split time between the Indiana Pacers and Phoenix Suns last year. On his career, he averages 19.7 minutes per game with 7.9 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.2 assists on 43 percent shooting from the floor and 35.2 percent shooting from deep.
Adding Budinger wouldn’t be the big move fans seem to want right now, but it sure couldn’t hurt. He’s a backup small forward who can come in on a situational basis and knock down shots. Not a bad thing with Jae Crowder still penciled in as starter and rookie Jaylen Brown going to need time to develop.
Crowder, anyway, was one of the assets the Celtics were apparently looking to move before the draft while pursuing guys like Jimmy Butler. If Griffin or Westbrook talks somehow become a reality, he’s going to come up again because he’s surplus talent and established at the NBA level at just 26 years old.
Budinger wouldn’t command headlines, but he’s the smart move a front office hoping to contend makes late on the market. Interest in him also suggests the team could look at other lower-profile shooters, both on the market and via trade.
It’s just another wrinkle keeping the always-active Celtics in the spotlight.