The Golden State Warriors didn’t have enough to trade for All-Star guard Jrue Holiday, but their pick next year was a huge part of the deal.
The Celtics are trading Robert Williams, Malcolm Brogdon, 2024 GSW 1st, 2029 unprotected BOS first to the Blazers, sources tell ESPN. https://t.co/gx53jyH1RG— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 1, 2023
It’s been a wild summer for the Warriors’ 2024 pick, which they originally traded to the Memphis Grizzlies in 2019 to facilitate the Kevin Durant-D’Angelo Russell sign-and-trade/Andre Iguodala salary dump. Earlier this year, Boston acquired the future pick when they swapped former Defensive Player of the Year and Warriors villain Marcus Smart for Kristaps Porzingis. The 2024 pick barely got a chance to settle in in New England before being re-routed to the Pacific Northwest.
After Milwaukee traded Jrue Holiday to get Oakland’s own Dame Lillard, who has lost ten straight playoff games to the Warriors, the Portland Trail Blazers turned around and flipped Holiday to the Celtics for a package headlined by the Warriors pick next season, along with their own 2029 selection.
It’s a smart move for Portland, who are ready to turn the team over to Anfernee Simons and No. 3 pick Scoot Henderson. They could have used Holiday as a veteran mentor, but the lure of two first-round picks, plus Malcolm Brogdon and Robert Williams, was too much. Especially since Brogdon can be flipped for more stuff. Ideally, Portland would trade Brogdon for a slightly-worse point guard and draft picks, then trade that guard for a slightly worse pick until they finally ended up with Ty Jerome and ten extra first-round picks.
It’s also another way that Portland has stuck it to Lillard since he requested a trade to the Miami Heat. Not only did Portland refuse to engage with Miami on trade talks for months, they sent him to a city that’s the polar opposite of South Beach. Then, just as Lillard finally landed on a championship contender, they traded Holiday to Lillard’s biggest Eastern Conference rival.
Holiday is the guard responsible for one of Lillard’s worst playoff performances, when Dame Time averaged 18.5 points on 35% shooting, with four turnovers per game in a four-game first-rund sweep in 2018. Now he’ll be waiting for Lillard in the playoffs, and he’ll be geared up for revenge against the Bucks for trading him.
Back in 2019, when this pick was first traded, it represented a player who was likely a freshman in high school at the time. Now the pick has grown and matured, and Golden State hopes it’s the No. 30 pick, where a shocking number of Warriors legends have been selected. There’s David Lee, Kevon Looney, and Festus Ezeli, along with Damian Jones, Omari Spellman, Nemanja Nedovic, and Anderson Varejao.
That’s assuming another Warriors’ title, which has become slighlty less likely with the Bucks and Celtics loading up. Sounds like Mike Dunleavy, Jr. needs to make a dramatic move of his own: Signing Reggie Bullock.