The NBA trade deadline lived up to all the hype and did not disappoint. We had significant trades, impactful trades, and some head-scratchers mixed in. But, of course, we all know about the blockbuster trade that happened while most people were asleep. The Brooklyn Nets officially ended the short-lived big three era this morning when they traded Kevin Durant to the Suns for Mikal Bridges, Jae Crowder (who was quickly traded to the Nets), Cam Johnson, and four unprotected first-round picks. We also had the Lakers add more size in the front court as they traded Patrick Beverley to the Magic for Mo Bamba.
This may not have been a flashy trade, but it may just turn out to be a difference maker. That move this trade season is Mike Muscala to the Boston Celtics. Yes, you heard me correctly, Muscala to the Celtics. The Celtics traded Justin Jackson and two second-round picks for Muscala, who slots into the Dennis Schroder TPE of $5.89 Million, which was set to expire today after the 3 PM EST trade deadline.
No, Muscala isn’t going to make the Sports Center’s top 10 plays or light Twitter on fire, but he will give the Celtics something they sorely need, and that is another big man who can stretch the floor. We last saw Muscala lighting up the Lakers on LeBron James night to the tune of 4-7 from 3-point range on his way to 16 points. Muscala is 9-17 from beyond the arc in his last three games and shooting .394 percent from the 3-point line on the season. Contrast that with Robert Williams, who has taken and made exactly the same number of 3-pointers as I have.
Another benefit of trading for the 6-11 Muscala is now you have another big to put in the lineup in case Williams goes out with some injury. Williams has only played 20 games this season after missing 21 last season and 30 the year before. It gives the Celtics the flexibility they need in the frontcourt.
Yes, there are trades with more prominent names that will get talked about a lot more. Still, for a championship-contending team like the Celtics, who already have the best record in the NBA, this deal could have a considerable impact, especially in the playoffs, where the need for floor spacing is at an all-time high. Remember this trade in May or June when out of nowhere, Muscala knocks down six 3s to help the Celtics win a playoff game.
This may not have been a flashy trade, but it may just turn out to be a difference maker. The Celtics made a savvy move in trading for Mike Muscala, and it could pay huge dividends for them come playoff time. Muscala gives the Celtics a much-needed boost of floor spacing and a reliable big man in case of injury. It may not be a move that will get talked about a lot, but it could be the difference between a championship and a first-round exit for the Celtics.