Thoughts on the Kemba Walker Deal (6/18/21)

Al Horford to sit out Wednesday's matchup with Cleveland - CelticsBlog

The first trade of the NBA offseason went down today, and it involves some biggish names. Kemba Walker is headed to OKC. Al Horford is returning to Boston. Some draft picks are involved. If you haven’t seen it yet, here’s the full deal. 

OKC Thunder get: Kemba Walker, 2021 16th overall pick, 2025 2nd round pick

Boston Celtics get: Al Horford, Moses Brown, 2023 2nd round pick

In my “what’s next for the Boston Celtics” article, I said that Kemba was still worth a decent young player or a protected first round pick. Moses Brown is that young player. I think he fits great with Boston’s timeline as a young guy to grow alongside Tatum and JB, and he’s also a good player who can help Boston win now.

The problem is that now Boston has four rotational centers on their roster. They already had Robert Williams and Tristan Thompson, and they just added Moses and Horford.

Tristan Thompson should get traded. He’s the odd man out in my opinion. Al Horford can run the four because he can stretch the floor. 

All in all, this was a decent return for Kemba. They cleared up some cap space, which is huge. The only problem is that they had to give up the 16th pick. Moses Brown is probably worth that, though, so it’s ok.

Celtics grade: B+

As for OKC, this was a solid trade. The main asset is that 16th overall pick. Sam Presti can use that pick to add to his stockpile of young players. 

Giving up Moses Brown is unfortunate, but he can be replaced. Evan Mobley should be available when OKC drafts in the top five. 

As for Kemba Walker, he probably shouldn’t stick around. The Thunder don’t need him. OKC on the selling end of a Kemba deal opens up a ton of possibilities, because they don’t need a super valuable asset in return. All they need is a couple draft picks. 

Some teams that might be looking for Kemba include the Clippers, Dallas, New York, and Chicago. 

I think this was a good trade for OKC. They got rid of Al Horford, and got a more valuable player in return. They got another first round pick. Good work from Sam Presti.

Grade: A- (Would be an A if Moses Brown wasn’t involved)

So, those are my thoughts about the first trade of the 2021 offseason! What do you think about this trade? Let me know! Thanks for reading, and see you next time!

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