Jaylen Brown from asset to investment
Jake Elmslie, Sports Editor
Almost immediately after the Boston Celtics drafted Jaylen Brown 3rd overall in the 2016 NBA Draft, the young wing’s name became a constant fixture of trade rumors and speculation regarding the teams future. Would he be flipped as a part of a package for a Paul George, Jimmy Butler, Kawhi Leonard, Bradley Beal or whoever else the disgruntled star of the month was, or would the team opt to buy in on his athleticism and potential and view him as core player on a future contender?
As of October 21st, the Celtics have seemingly decided to follow the latter path, with Brown, inking a four year $115 million rookie extension to stay in Boston for the foreseeable future. Now Brown can obviously still be traded the same as any other player in the NBA, however, the dynamics surrounding such a move have now shifted radically. No longer is Brown on an affordable, easily, moveable rookie contract, that nearly any team interested in his services could fit on their payroll with little mauvering. This limits the types of trades Brown can be utilized in to ether a swap with another team willing to make the same significant investment the Celtics have in the player or in a worst case scenario a salary dump if Brown should fail to produce to a level in line with his compensation.
In essence, this contract signifies Brown’s transition from an asset with the potential to be traded at any moment, should the right circumstances arise to a piece the Celtics and Danny Ainge are now banking on to become comparable to the players they passed on; adding in favor of retaining their former draft pick. Should he not elevate his play to an all-star level in the near future, the Celtics will run the risk of finding themselves in a situation where they squandered what was once a highly valuable asset in favor of complacency.