Let the fallout of the Damian Lillard trade continue. After being dealt to the Portland Trail Blazers as part of the trade that sent Lillard to the Milwaukee Bucks, Jrue Holiday is now being rerouted to the Boston Celtics.
In return, the Blazers are getting Robert Williams III, Malcolm Brogdon, a 2024 first-round pick via the Golden State Warriors and a 2029 unprotected first-round pick from Boston. It's an impressive haul for Portland, who are still racking up assets after trading Lillard earlier this week. And for those keeping a running tally at home, the Blazers now have three first-round picks, two pick swaps, Williams, Brogdon, Deandre Ayton and Toumani Camara, all from dealing Lillard to Milwaukee.
And it doesn't seem like the Blazers are done, as they could still look to move Brogdon to a contender as they've already said before that they're focused on building around their young guards in Scoot Henderson, Anfernee Simons and Shaedon Sharpe.
But for now, let's focus on the trade at hand and give out some grades in the Holiday deal.
Celtics grade: B+
Boston certainly gets an upgrade here, even if it means parting with Brogdon, Williams and two future first-round picks. Though Brogdon did win Sixth Man of the Year last season, his durability has been a drawback, making that is rather easy decision. Holiday gives them an upgrade defensively in the backcourt, and supplies them with yet another offensive playmaker to surround Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Kristaps Porzingis with. In a vacuum, this could look like Holiday is essentially replacing Marcus Smart, who Boston dealt to the Memphis Grizzlies in a three-team trade that got them Porzingis, but Holiday gives them even more than what Smart provided from an on-court perspective.
Holiday earned All-Star honors last season after averaging 19.3 points, 7.4 assists and 5.1 rebounds while shooting 38.4% from 3-point territory. He's the type of player who can do whatever is needed, whether that's running the offense with the ball in his hands, or sinking spot-up jumpers beyond the arc. He gives Boston's offense another layer and can be someone who will step up if Tatum and Brown are getting swarmed by the defense or are having an off night. From a defensive standpoint, Holiday's talents are well documented, and he's joining a Boston team that already ranked second in the league last season on that end of the floor.
The downside in this deal for Boston is having to give up Williams, who despite having issues with staying healthy, showed he can make a significant impact on both ends of the floor. He was a quality rim protector on defense and was always a lob threat off pick-and-rolls. Ideally, Porzingis fills the rim-protecting role, and he's certainly more versatile on offense, but he also has had durability issues in the past. That leaves Al Horford, the 37-year-old big man, who has been an essential piece to Boston's success over the years, but relying on him heavily at that age could be an issue.
CBS Sports HQ Newsletter
Your Ultimate Guide to Every Day in Sports
We bring sports news that matters to your inbox, to help you stay informed and get a winning edge.
Thanks for signing up!
Keep an eye on your inbox.
There was an error processing your subscription.
Trail Blazers grade: A
This is a savvy deal for Portland, who can still flip Brogdon to get even more assets. They're expected to keep Williams and pair him alongside Ayton, who could be a formidable frontcourt going forward. Even if Williams doesn't work out due to injury issues, there isn't much risk they're taking a chance on him given he's shown great promise when he's fully healthy.
The 2024 first-round pick from the Warriors may not be that high, given Golden State is expected to be a title contender this season, but it gives the Blazers assets to keep building their young core going forward. The 2029 first-round pick from the Celtics may be a ways off, but it could be an interesting pick depending on how Boston pans out over the next few years. While the Celtics are poised to be title contenders for the foreseeable future with Tatum and Brown at the core, as we've seen several times in this league, anything can change in an instant. What could now seem like a low-20s first-round pick could end up being in the lottery.
As a standalone trade, this was already a solid deal for the Blazers, and when you factor in the rest of what Portland got from trading Lillard, this is a home run. It stocks Portland's war chest for the future, and it also keeps them semi-competitive right now.