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Trade Rumors: Celtics Looking for Moves; Should Mavs Go ‘All-In’ on Jaylen Brown?

The Dallas Mavericks and Boston Celtics have made trades with each other before. This time around, the Mavs should be making calls about a potential Jaylen Brown deal.

The Dallas Mavericks have been linked to Indiana Pacers’ Myles TurnerAtlanta Hawks’ John Collins and Detroit Pistons' Jerami Grant in recent NBA trade rumors. Although all of those versatile players would improve Dallas' roster quite a bit, the Mavs should still be trying to aim even higher in order to pair a true co-star with Luka Doncic if possible.

Boston Celtics’ Jaylen Brown, who can play at shooting guard or small forward and can create his own shots at will, is a big-time player that Dallas should attempt to trade for in the coming weeks. And according to a recent report, maybe the Celtics are ready to try putting new pieces around superstar Jayson Tatum.

“The Celtics appear to have to come to the conclusion that changes need to be made. Now," said Heavy.com's Steve Bulpett. "According to sources around the league, the (Celtics) have been extremely active in trade talks.”

Although Brown can be a ball-dominant player at times, he could still thrive as an off-ball player next to Doncic, as he shoots 36 percent on catch-and-shoot threes. Even when it's not catch-and-shoot situations, though, having a co-star that can dribble and go get his own bucket when needed could lift a weight off of Doncic's shoulders as we get closer to the postseason.

Although the Mavs might not have the best trade package to offer the Celtics for Brown, who is averaging 23.9 points, 6.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game this season, sometimes big trades are all about trying to catch lightning in a bottle. We saw a prime example of this three years ago when the Mavs traded for Kristaps Porzingis, despite many believing they didn’t have enough assets to pull it off at the time.

Jalen Brunson has found himself in a number of trade and free agency rumors lately as he’s playing the best basketball of his young NBA career. Brunson is averaging 15.8 points, 3.8 rebounds and 5.5 assists in 31.1 minutes per game this season for Dallas. All of those numbers are career highs for Brunson, and it’s all but assured that he’ll receive the four-year, $80 million contract he wants in free agency this summer, or at least something very close to it.

Although Brunson isn’t quite on the same tier as Brown is yet, the argument could be made that he can reach that tier if given the opportunity to be the primary point guard on another team. Here is the trade package the Mavs should offer the Celtics:

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Mavs receive: Jaylen Brown and Dennis Schroder

Celtics receive: Jalen Brunson, Kristaps Porzingis and two second round picks

From the Celtics’ side of things, they’d need to be willing to match Brunson’s upcoming price points if they pulled the trigger on something like this. The Celtics’ front office would need to believe in Brunson’s potential as a team’s primary starting point guard to exchange a talent like Brown for him. Many people around the league believe Brunson can take that next step if put in the right situation. Do the Celtics believe that?

Kristaps Porzingis has had himself a very nice 2021-22 campaign, despite not finding his three-point rhythm just yet. However, he remains an imperfect fit with Doncic. On the season, the Mavs have a -3.2 net rating when Doncic and Porzingis share the court together (16 games, 353 minutes). For context, the two-man lineup of Doncic and Marquese Chriss, which only has a sample size of six games and 32 minutes, already has a +20.6 net rating. This isn't to say that Chriss is better than Porzingis, of course. That would be asinine. But it does show how certain players and how they play fit better with Doncic's skillset.

Boston has expressed interest in Porzingis in the past, although that was when Danny Ainge was the general manager. The idea of acquiring a true starting point guard and a post threat that can also stretch the floor might be enough to entice the Eastern Conference's 10th-place Celtics to shake things up.

Depending on how highly you think of Brown, you might thing the Mavs would need to include more draft compensation to make a trade like this work, and that might be right. But Jalen Brunson has become so valuable to this Mavericks' team this year, that giving up him, Porzingis plus a first round pick or two might actually be a little too much at this point. And again, Porzingis is having a really solid, All-Star consideration type of season. The idea of this particular trade scenario isn't nearly as lopsided as it would have looked last summer or earlier.

Stay tuned to DallasBasketball.com for more trade speculation and updates as we get closer to the February 10 trade deadline.