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NBA trade rumor: David Lee available (shocking, I know)

This is my shocked face.

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

I know this is going to shock you, but David Lee has apparently been made available for potential trades.

Witness this rumor from the well respected David Aldridge.

Assessing the league-wide need to make trades | NBA.com

The Celtics have been very solid, but Coach Brad Stevens has a minutes problem, as evidenced by the lack of time for David Lee—whose expiring contract is available, per league sources.

First of all, this was always going to be the case. Even if Lee performed like an All Star, he was always going to be available to be traded because that's just where the Celtics are at this point. As it turns out, Lee hasn't been horrible but there's more than a little evidence to suggest that he might not be the best fit for this team right now (or in the future).

NBA AM: 378 NBA Players Are Trade Eligible Today | Basketball Insiders | NBA Rumors And Basketball News

Given that Lee’s objective in getting out of Golden State was to play a bigger role, he becomes an interesting name to watch as the trade season gets underway. Celtic sources say they are very happy with what Lee has brought to the team, however, his ending contract could return something of value to the Celtics, especially given his $15.493 million contract.

Expiring contracts aren't worth what they once were because there are fewer long-term deals and thus fewer albatross contracts that teams are looking to unload.  In addition, with the exploding cap, more teams are getting tax relief and cap room next year so there's less incentive to dump contracts.

With that said, if anyone decides to punt this season and start rebuilding, offloading a big salary guy in exchange for Lee and one of Boston's pile of draft picks isn't a bad place to start.  So don't rule out anything.

I doubt we'll see anything happen before the week of the deadline, but it will be interesting watching the rumor mill once again.