Speaking of Golden State, the Warriors are -160 money line favorites to repeat as NBA Finals champions this upcoming season.
Now, with Irving ready to don the famous green uniform, the Celtics will be primed to make a deep run in the playoffs (if they weren't already).
The trade benefits the Cavaliers in another way. He is a better long-term option than Thomas, but the 5-foot-8 point guard will mostly be able to replace Irving's offensive production for Cleveland.
En route to a championship in 2008, the Celtics defeated the Cavs in the Eastern Conference semifinals in seven games. The reported trade reached Klay Thompson, who immediately responded and called it "flattering". Those five teams, however, couldn't meet the king's ransom the Cavs wanted for their superstar guard.
Aside from the Warriors, the Cavaliers also proposed a Kyrie Irving trade to other Western Conference teams, according to Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders. That series was heartbreaking, especially considering it was the year after the Cavs had went to the Finals, only to be swept by the San Antonio Spurs. But based on Eastern Conference postseason statistics, it seems James may miss Irving less than one might think.
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This trade suggests to me that the Cavaliers are having one last shot at glory, and have assumed LeBron James will not re-sign with them.
Although there would certainly be experience in the team, at 35 years old Wade would be a player for the here and now.
So, basically the Celtics have a chance to compete with the Cavs now. On top of that, the 2018 pick from the Nets could easily end up being a top three selection in a talented class. It's sickening, too. The Celtics beat up on the Cavs in the late 2000s.
Most people believe both teams won the deal.
Replacing Irving as the starting point guard and James' number two man is Thomas, who has been the face of the Celtics franchise since he joined in 2015.