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Creative minor trade options for the Celtics

The Celtics have work to do, but that doesn't necessarily mean huge moves.

Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

Danny Ainge may yet pull off a blockbuster trade or he may not. He does have some pressure to relieve the tax burden on the team - not just because the owners wouldn't be willing to pay, but because the stiffer penalties to exceeding the "apron" would prevent the team from using all the provisions that most teams have (sign-and-trades, full Mid Level Exceptions, etc.)

So Danny may have to get creative - which happens to be his specialty.

Chris Forsberg notes that Ainge could use the three non-guaranteed contracts (Terrence Williams, Shavlik Randolph, and D.J. White) in trades where the other team would have the option of releasing them for cap savings. Their salaries combine for about $3M next year.

In addition, they may look to shed some of their longer term MLE-type deals (Courtney Lee, Jason Terry, or even the slightly more expensive Brandon Bass) in exchange for expiring contracts.

Here's the plan: Keyboard GM - Boston Celtics Blog - ESPN Boston

If Boston can find an expiring deal by packaging the likes of Lee with the non-guaranteeds, then it might have to consider it for the long-term health of the salary structure. Is there someone on the Boston roster that old friend Ryan McDonough -- now the GM in Phoenix -- might covet in a swap for Marcin Gortat and his expiring $7.7 million deal? (Of course, cap space might be more valuable to the Suns than a familiar face on a lengthy deal.)

Also, with Ainge working out so many second round projected players, I wouldn't be surprised at all to see him trade the 16th pick for a later first rounder and a second round pick. Or perhaps the first rounder would be packaged with Lee or Terry in exchange for salary relief and a 2nd rounder.

Basically there are a lot of options available to Ainge besides simply selecting at our designated spot and trying to find "traditional" trades.

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