It's Official: Celtics Trade Jeff Green To Memphis
BOSTON (CBS) -- The long rumored Jeff Green trade is now official.
The Celtics have completed a three team swap with the Memphis Grizzlies and New Orleans Pelicans that sends Green to the Memphis and lands Boston more assets for the future.
In return for Green, Boston receives veteran swingman Tayshaun Prince and a future first round pick from Memphis, and guard Austin Rivers from New Orleans. New Orleans will also receive Quincy Pondexter from the Grizzlies in the deal.
Niether Prince or Rivers are a part of Boston's future plans. Prince, 34, will be a free agent after the season and will likely be bought out by Boston.
As for Rivers, the son of former Celtics head coach Doc Rivers, he is reportedly being shopped around the league, with Doc's L.A. Clippers a potential destination. A deal is expected to happen within the week.
In getting yet another draft pick in the Green trade, Boston could have up to 14 picks over the next two drafts -- including six first rounders.
Green thanked Celtics fans on Instagram following Monday's announcement of the trade:
"Thank You to all the true Celtic fans and supporters of mine during my years as a Celtic. Thank You To the Organization for giving me a chance after my heart surgery and for being there for me during that tough time. The city of Boston will always hold a special place in my heart. THANK YOU"
Green was supposed to be a young star who helped the Celtics transition from the aging "Big Three" when Danny Ainge acquired him at the 2011 NBA trade deadline. But it came at the cost of Kendrick Perkins, a fan favorite, and many felt that taking Perk out of the equation killed any chances of the Celtics going on a title run that season. Ainge relied heavily on the health of Shaquille O'Neal, a plan that backfired. Because of that, and the inconsistent play from Green throughout his tenure on the Celtics, that trade will likely always be heavily scrutinized.
Green averaged just 9.8 points off the bench for the Celtics following his arrival, and didn't make much of an impact in the postseason as Boston was eliminated in the second round by the Miami Heat. A restricted free agent the following season, he signed a one-year, $9 million deal with Boston.
But Green wouldn't play a game that year and the contract was voided after he was diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm. He underwent surgery and missed the entire season, but returned to the court the following year after agreeing to a four-year, $36 million deal with the Celtics.
With that deal, the lofty expectations continued to grow. Green had a pretty good season for someone who was coming off heart surgery, averaging 12.8 points per game. He mostly came off the bench again but made 17 starts, a number that would increase greatly the following year.
The Celtics traded away Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett during the summer of 2013, so the keys to the team were officially in Green's hands (especially with Rajon Rondo hurt to begin the season). He started all 82 games for Boston that following season, averaging a then-career high 17.9 points per game, but the rebuilding Celtics finished in the bottom of the NBA barrel.
Trade rumors surrounded Green entering the 2014-15 campaign, and got much louder as he put up some solid numbers. At the time of the trade he was averaging a team-high 17.6 points for Boston, but again, his performances were very inconsistent.
From the moment the Perkins trade was announced, the expectations for Green in Boston were through the roof. He was supposed to give an aging team some youth, and a solid building block for the future, but they were expectations he could never live up to.
Because of that, Danny Ainge may never live down the 2011 trade that brought Green to Boston.
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