The Boston Celtics Make A Trade With The Dallas Mavericks Are The Celtics Still Better Than The Indiana Pacers?
The Indiana Pacers were 34-38 last season and the ninth seed in the Eastern Conference while the Boston Celtics were the seventh seed with a record of 36-36.
Most people would not be shocked by the Pacers record as it stood, but the Celtics were considered one of the premier teams in all of the Eastern Conference.
They have made the Eastern Conference Finals in two of the last four seasons.
According to Shams Charania of the Athletic on Friday night, the Celtics are finalizing a deal to acquire Josh Richardson from the Dallas Mavericks (see Tweet below from Charania).
Richardson averaged 12.1 points per game for the Mavericks last season.
He's turned into a nice role player, but at one point with the Miami Heat he looked like a rising star (16.6 PPG in 2019).
The Celtics are also an organization that has been known to get the best out of players (think about Isaiah Thomas averaging 28.9 points per game in 2017).
Both the Pacers and Celtics will be better next season.
The Celtics now have Richardson and get All-Star Jaylen Brown back healthy.
Meanwhile, the Pacers get a healthy T.J. Warren, Myles Turner and a full season with Caris LeVert to go with Malcolm Brogdon and All-Star Domantas Sabonis.
The Pacers also have a new coach with Rick Carlisle, and so do the Celtics with Ime Udoka.
Carlisle has won an NBA Championship as a coach, and Udoka is a first-year head coach.
That being said, the Celtics have Jayson Tatum who is clearly the best player on both teams.
Overall, a clicking Pacers team will likely find themselves in the middle of the pack in the playoff picture, while a fully peaking Celtics squad could be one of the top-three teams.
Prediction: Celtics and Pacers are both better than they were last season, but the Celtics are still the better team by several games.