The Boston Celtics have had a busy offseason thus far and it’s only the beginning of what is a new era in the franchise under new president of basketball operations Brad Stevens. With Stevens moving from the sideline to the front office, his first task was hiring a new head coach to lead his team to success. In doing so, he hired an established and long-time assistant, Ime Udoka.
Once Stevens solidified his team’s head coach, he addressed the biggest issue that strongly impacted the Celtics last season, which was Kemba Walker and the point guard position. Although Walker was a great fit for the young locker room in Boston, he didn’t propel the Celtics to any newer or higher heights after signing a four-year max contract in 2019. He was battling injuries more often than not during his short tenure in Boston.
The busy offseason for the Boston Celtics will continue as the ongoing search for a point guard begins.
While the need to upgrade the point guard position was evident, Stevens finalized a deal that sent Walker and a 2021 first-round draft pick to the OKC Thunder in exchange for Al Horford, Moses Brown, and a 2023 second-round pick. As this deal doesn’t give the Celtics a point guard in return, parting ways with Walker without a true replacement is a sign that the newly ran Boston Celtics front office feels the same about needing to upgrade the point guard position.
There are going to be many intriguing free agent point guard options this summer. Some of those options include Lonzo Ball, Patty Mills, and Spencer Dinwiddie as being the three options hitting the market this summer. Ball is coming off the best season of his career with the New Orleans Pelicans and is a player that could fit well with the core group of the Celtics.
Mills had one of the most productive seasons of his career this season and will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. He averaged 10.8 points and 2.4 assists per game while shooting 41.2 percent from the field. His veteran presence could prove to be beneficial for Boston’s young team. It’s also worth mentioning that Mills and Udoka spent seven years together in San Antonio. That alone could draw some appeal from the veteran point guard.
Dinwiddie, on the other hand, peaked in 2019 with the Brooklyn Nets and only played in three games in 2020 due to a partially torn ACL. Despite being an experienced veteran, it’s fair to say that the Boston Celtics should stand clear of any players with lower-body injuries.
Another rumor floating around the Boston Celtics is a potential trade with the Indians Pacers in exchange for Malcolm Brogdon. Although it’s highly unlikely that the Pacers will part ways with Brogdon, it’s still an interesting theory to think about what he could bring to the table for the Celtics. Brogdon also had the best season of his career in 2020, averaging 21.2 points and 5.9 assists per game.
The Boston Celtics drafted Yam Madar 47th overall in the 2020 NBA Draft out of Israel. After keeping him overseas for a year, Madar is ready for the NBA.
Acquiring a starting point guard is something the Boston Celtics need to do and are probably already in the works on. However, there is an interesting player that Boston already has the rights for and stashed away after drafting him 47th overall in the 2020 NBA Draft out of the Israeli Super League. He will join the Celtics during the 2021 Summer League in Las Vegas. Insert Yam Madar.
When the Boston Celtics drafted Madar last year, it was always the plan to keep him overseas for a year and evaluate him in the following. Former general manager Danny Ainge foresaw this happening with his draft-and-stash player.
“He’s a player that we’ve watched over there over in Israel play quite a bit. We’ll just see how it works out. I don’t really know. The plan will probably be to keep him overseas for at least another year and evaluate from there, but we’re anxious see his growth and development as a player.” – Danny Ainge, via Justin Quinn of Celtics Wire
Madar is a 6’3″ 20-year-old standout point guard for Hapoel Tel Aviv. He received the Israeli Super League Most Improved Player Award in 2020, becoming the youngest player to ever win the award. Madar finished last season averaging 17.1 points, 5.2 assists, three rebounds, and 1.3 steals per game (30 games).
Furthermore, Madar led the Israeli Super League in games played (30), finished in the top-four in total points (513) and assists (157), as well as landing in the top 15 for the most 3-pointers made last season (54). Madar showcased himself to be one of the best players in the Israeli Super League and has an opportunity to earn a roster spot on the Celtics at the conclusion of Summer League in Las Vegas this year.
It’s fair to say that Madar grew and developed in a way Ainge had expected. Madar can fill most of the holes that Boston was missing from their point guard position last year. He can score and create opportunities for himself while also being able to facilitate and be an effective floor general. Madar is also an exceptional pesty defender, which we know is a popular quality in Boston’s guards. But most of all, he is reliable and durable.
Although it’s still unknown which direction the Boston Celtics will go in regarding their point guard position, it’s fair to say that Madar is already a better option than Carsen Edwards and Tremont Waters. Nevertheless, we’ll have to wait to see what he looks like during an NBA Summer League and how Stevens and coach Udoka will evaluate him. Madar, however, appears to be ready for the NBA and could help the Celtics in more ways than not.