Celtics Beating Cavaliers In Conference Finals And In Kyrie Irving Trade

It's quite telling that neither team has gotten any real contributions from the original members of last summer's blockbuster trade in the Eastern Conference finals, yet one side can laugh its head off at the other. 

Celtics. The team wondering what they'll do with the eighth overall pick they got for Kyrie freaking Irving is the Cavaliers." data-reactid="16">The team laughing is the Celtics. The team wondering what they'll do with the eighth overall pick they got for Kyrie freaking Irving is the Cavaliers.

At the time the trade was made, there was actually debate as to whether the Cavaliers, who received the final first-round pick from the infamous Nets trade as the key prize in the trade, would actually be better off this season. After all, they also got an All-Star point guard for at least a year. (It turned out that even the "at least a year" talk was premature.) 

The trade, when all was said and done:  

Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Žižić, Brooklyn's 2018 first-round pick, Miami's 2020 second-round pick" data-reactid="21">

Cavaliers get: Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Žižić, Brooklyn's 2018 first-round pick, Miami's 2020 second-round pick

Celtics get: Kyrie Irving, Guillermo Mota (not really, but people forget the Red Sox also got Guillermo Mota in the Josh Beckett/Mike Lowell trade. Anyway, it was just Kyrie for all that)

We all know what happened. Thomas took forever to come back from hip surgery, and when he came back, he was part of a group that had way too much turmoil. Eventually, he was sent away at the trade deadline. So was Crowder. Now, the guys acquired for the former Celtics are currently playing for the Cavs, but here's what the Cavs have gotten through two conference finals games from those guys: 

Larry Nance Jr.: 14 minutes, 0 points

Jordan Clarkson: 16 minutes, 10 points

George Hill: 51 minutes, 8 points

Rodney Hood: 30 minutes, 13 points 

And let's not forget that they still have... 

Ante Žižić: 3 minutes, 0 points

LeBron James proved to be spare parts that ended up getting traded for more spare parts. Tuesday was the Cavaliers' chance to land anything from that trade that might entice James to stay for next season. " data-reactid="29">So the part of the return that was supposed to provide immediate reinforcements around LeBron James proved to be spare parts that ended up getting traded for more spare parts. Tuesday was the Cavaliers' chance to land anything from that trade that might entice James to stay for next season. 

The Nets pick, which came in projected to land eighth, did not budge. Now the best thing the Cavs have to show for trading a five-time All-Star that was 25 at the time of the deal is maybe a chance at landing Mo Bamba if he can fall to them. 

That's not just a bad trade. It's a terrible trade. There have been a couple of hockey trades around these parts that give Bostonians a pretty good eye for knowing a terrible deal when they see one, and this is one of them. 

In fact, this has long been worse than the Tyler Seguin trade. At least the Seguin trade was one great, young player for one very good veteran, a pretty good young player, and some other stuff. Imagine if that trade had been Seguin for some mediocre parts and a second-round pick. That's what Kyrie for those players and No. 8 would be like. 

Feisty Smart vital to C's success" data-reactid="33">

MORE - Feisty Smart vital to C's success

And it's not like Irving is perfect. His left knee, which ended his season when it was decided he'd have surgery, is obviously a concern. But the Celtics are now a team that will build around Irving (and a bunch of other great players they already had), while the Cavaliers can only hope that the eighth pick can be the start of a rebuilding process if and when LeBron departs. 

Teams are by no means guaranteed a star with the eighth pick in the NBA draft. In fact, it's unlikely. That's what the Cavaliers need out of this trade. That's certainly what they gave away. 

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Celtics Beating Cavaliers In Conference Finals And In Kyrie Irving Trade

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Celtics Beating Cavaliers In Conference Finals And In Kyrie Irving Trade

Celtics Beating Cavaliers In Conference Finals And In Kyrie Irving Trade

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Celtics Beating Cavaliers In Conference Finals And In Kyrie Irving Trade

Celtics Beating Cavaliers In Conference Finals And In Kyrie Irving Trade

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Celtics Beating Cavaliers In Conference Finals And In Kyrie Irving Trade