Atlantic Notes: Celtics’ Draft, Raptors’ Offseason, Nets

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The Celtics may want to move up in the draft, but getting a deal done won’t be easy, writes Tom Westerholm of MassLive. Other teams recognize Boston’s urgency to turn the 14th, 26th and 30th picks into a higher selection, which means president of basketball operations Danny Ainge might have to attach a significant asset to entice a trading partner.

Westerholm states that Tremont Waters, Carsen Edwards or Romeo Langford probably won’t be enough, and teams are more likely to ask for Grant Williams or Robert Williams, whom the Celtics would prefer to hold onto. Instead of moving up in the lottery, Boston may opt to keep the 14th choice and try to package No. 26 and No. 30 for a selection in the middle of the first round. They could also opt to use those two picks on draft-and-stash players who wouldn’t be on the roster next season.

 There’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Aaron Nesmith of Vanderbilt is the betting favorite to be the Celtics‘ selection if they keep the No. 14 pick, according to Darren Hartwell of NBC Sports Boston. Nesmith, ranked 13th on ESPN’s list of the top 100 prospects, is listed as +550 and is followed by Patrick Williams of Florida State and Saddiq Bey of Villanova, both at +600.
  • Eric Koreen of The Athletic tries to build the perfect offseason for the Raptors, which includes re-signing free agents Fred VanVleet, Serge Ibaka, Chris Boucher and Oshae Brissett. Also in Koreen’s scenario, Toronto lures Harry Giles away from the Kings at $4.2MM for one season with a player option for 2021/22, and drafts Malachi Flynn and Paul Eboua. In a potentially significant move for the future, Koreen has Giannis Antetokounmpo turning down a super-max offer from the Bucks.
  • John Abbamondi, the new CEO of BSE Global, the Nets‘ parent company, relies on his military training to succeed in the business world, according to Brian Lewis of The New York Post. A former Navy pilot, Abbamondi is  looking forward to the upcoming season. “We have a really exciting season coming up,” he said. “We’re thrilled with the coaching staff (Steve Nash) has put together, excited to see (Kevin Durant) and (Kyrie Irving) on the court together, and there’s a whole bunch of talented players on this roster. There’s a lot to look forward to. We do hope to have fans back in the building at some point, although we have to be realistic: Everybody’s safety and health comes first.”