In a stunning turn of events, commissioner Adam Silver has mandated that the Boston Celtics return their draft picks to the Brooklyn Nets, a source reports. In case you’ve forgotten, the Nets traded their 2014, 2016, and 2018 picks to the Celtics in a 2013 draft day blockbuster that brought them Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry.
Silver, who is still trying to create his NBA legacy since taking over for David Stern in 2014, made the tough choice after having dinner with Sean Marks, the Nets’ new general manager.
“He was just so nice, how could I refuse?” Silver said, “Listen, Marks didn’t trade those picks and we’re huge about second chances and the ability to change your mind in the NBA — just ask DeAndre Jordan!”
The Nets are currently 21-54, good for 14th in the Eastern Conference and a full 22.0 games behind the Celtics. Silver added:
“It’s not really fair, you know? Paul only stayed a year and then Kevin was traded — and who could have predicted Kirilenko’s bad back?”
Certainly, the Celtics and general manager Danny Ainge were not pleased with the reversal, but this is actually not the first time a commissioner has made an unpopular decision. Many will remember 2011’s vetoed Lakers-Hornets trade that would’ve teamed up Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard with Chris Paul. Stern famously blocked the trade for “basketball reasons” and the Hornets eventually traded him to the other L.A.-area team, the Clippers.
Asked if he was afraid of the Nets-Celtics re-swap becoming his lasting legacy, Silver replied: “Have you seen Stephen Curry? He’s so hot right now, I could do anything and nobody would bat an eye.”
Marks, who replaced Billy King in February, has been busy and, in the span of a month, bought out Joe Johnson and Andrea Bargnani, hired an assistant general manager, and signed Sean Kilpatrick to a multi-year deal.
However, when Silver offered the Nets a no-strings attached, free swap for James Young, who the Celtics selected with the 2014 pick, Marks simply said:
“Nah, we’re good.”
The Nets play their cross-river rivals tonight for the final time this season at 7:30. Tune in to watch a well-rested Brook Lopez face-off against his twin brother, Robin, on their birthday as the Nets and Knicks battle on YES.
(Happy April Fools’ from your friends at The Brooklyn Game!)