The Cleveland Cavaliers are reportedly exploring a trade with the Boston Celtics that would net them future Hall of Fame small forward Paul Pierce.
Sam Amico of FOX Sports Ohio reports, while unable to confirm, that the Cavaliers would send the Celtics the 31st and 33rd selections in the 2013 NBA Draft in return for Pierce. The Milwaukee Bucks have also expressed interest in Pierce, per the report.
These rumors are on the heels of reports that the Cavs have also engaged with the Dallas Mavericks to move up to the 13th-overall spot, presumably using the No. 19 pick in addition to other assets which may or may not include the pair of second-round selections. Cleveland has expressed considerable desire to upgrade their small forward position and appears willing do so either via the draft or through trades with free agency being the worst-case scenario.
It is presumed that the Celtics would receive a sizable trade exception if they did indeed move Pierce who is due $15 million ($5 million guaranteed) in 2013-14. Boston is potentially looking at a rebuilding period, having entertained the possible trade of forward Kevin Garnett to the Los Angeles Clippers for younger, less-costly options. Pierce, if moved to Cleveland, would seemingly represent a one-year rental of a player who averaged 18.6 points and 6.5 rebounds per game (19.14 PER) in 2012-13. He will be 36 years old next season.
Amico also reports that the Cavaliers have discussed a trade that would qualify as “something big,” including the team’s first-overall selection, but talks have recently cooled down.