The Boston Celtics fell just short of their goal this past season, losing to the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals. Now, their focus will be on improving this offseason and attempting to make it all the way back next year for another chance to win it all.
While the majority of their improvements will be internal, there are certainly ways they can improve externally. They don’t have a first-round pick, but attacking undrafted free agency and nailing their second-rounder should be a top priority. However, even more important than that will be scouring the trade market for potential moves.
Well, one player just hinted that he could be interested in coming to Boston (kind of). Washington Wizards forward Kyle Kuzma tweeted out some kind words about the city and it sent fans into a frenzy.
Kuzma tweeted, “Boston is a nice city in the summer!”
This immediately caused Celtics fans to assume that Kuzma could be heading to Boston this offseason, with one, very clear pathway being mentioned as the route he could take to get there.
How Kuzma Could Join Celtics
The Wizards are in a very weird spot as a franchise. Whether or not Bradley Beal re-signs there this summer will play a huge factor in how they choose to attack the offseason. If he leaves, then Kuzma will likely become more available because they would probably rebuild.
In that case, Boston could jump at the chance to take Kuzma’s salary off Washington’s hands by making use of the $17.1 million TPE they acquired when Evan Fournier signed with the New York Knicks last offseason.
Kuzma is set to earn $13 million next season, which would fit into the Fournier TPE. That means that Boston could send out nothing but picks in the deal and it would still work. But in reality, they would likely have to throw in someone like Aaron Nesmith to sweeten the pot for Washington.
The 26-year-old forward is a quality player who could step in and help the Celtics on their quest to bring home Banner 18 to Boston.
Kuzma’s Playstyle and Fit With Celtics
This past season, Kuzma appeared in 66 games for the Wizards, starting all of them. He averaged 17.1 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 3.5 assists on 45.2% shooting from the field and 34.1% shooting from behind the three-point line.
Kuzma isn’t a phenomenal defender, but he was a part of the 2020 Los Angeles Lakers team that won a championship on the back of their defense. He’s most certainly passable on that end of the floor, and at 6’9, his size allows him to match up with bigger forwards.
If he wanted to fit in with the Celtics, he would have to adapt to their switch-heavy defense, but Kuzma has proven to be a hard worker throughout this time in the league, so he would likely be able to adjust.
Most importantly, the addition of Kuzma would give the Celtics a big-time boost in the scoring department. On nights when Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown go cold, he would be able to step up.
One tweet doesn’t mean that Kuzma will a Celtic by the start of next season, but it wouldn’t be a bad idea for Boston to explore the option.