Report: Ainge wanted to trade Isaiah last year for another lottery pick

Report: Ainge wanted to trade Isaiah last year for another lottery pick

As rumors inevitably fly about what the Celtics will do with their No. 1 overall pick in the draft next month, ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan shared a story about what the C’s were trying to do before last year’s draft.

Trade Isaiah Thomas? Yes, and just about everyone else on the roster.

MacMullan told another Hall of Fame basketball writer, Bob Ryan, on Ryan’s podcast that Danny Ainge was looking to trade Thomas last year to try and get another lottery pick in addition to the No. 3 choice, which the Celtics used to take Jaylen Brown. 

“Before the draft last year, Danny was trying to get two picks, not just Jaylen Brown,” MacMullan told Ryan. “He was on the phone with everybody from coast to coast, and he was offering everybody. That includes Marcus Smart and Isaiah Thomas, and anything else they needed to get where he wanted to go. There were no untouchables on that team last year.” 

The Celtics had three of the first 25 picks in last year's draft and took Brown and international big men Guerschon Yabusele (16th) and Ante Zizic (23rd). 

Is everyone, including Thomas, 27, whose scoring improved from 22.2 points a game last season to 28.9 this season, untouchable again this year? 

“The only untouchable now I would say is Al Horford,” MacMullan said. 

Kelly Olynyk in Celtics starting lineup in Game 4

Kelly Olynyk in Celtics starting lineup in Game 4

CLEVELAND – Amir Johnson’s right shoulder injury has him still in a state of limbo, which is why the Boston Celtics will start Kelly Olynyk tonight in Game 4 of Boston’s best-of-seven series with Cleveland.

Boston cut Cleveland’s series lead to 2-1 following their 111-108 Game 3 win.

Olynyk appeared in 75 games this season with six starts.

As a starter, he averaged 10.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists.

Olynyk said his focus tonight will be pretty simple.

“Just keep playing every possession like it’s the most important possession of the game,” Olynyk told CSNNE.com.

LeBron James hasn't always been dominant the game after a bad performance

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LeBron James hasn't always been dominant the game after a bad performance

Conventional wisdom has been spreading almost from the moment Avery Bradley's shot (finally) dropped through the cylinder in the closing seconds Sunday night, and it goes something like this:

LeBron James was so bad in Game 3 that, determined to exact revenge, he's going to come out like a force of nature and obliterate the Celtics in Game 4.

Makes sense. But, you know, LeBron has had other playoff games in which he's scored fewer than 12 points. He's always been good the next time out -- certainly better than >12 points -- but nothing sweeping or historic:

And amazingly enough, his teams lost two of those three games.

So if you were thinking the Celtics' Game 3 triumph virtually guaranteed a Cavalier victory and a dominant LeBron James performance in Game 4 . . . well, maybe not.