There are a lot of reasons I will forever love Danny Ainge. Mostly for the fact that he built the only Celts title team I've seen with my own eyes while being alive, but also because the man is not only ruthless, he might just be a master troll.
You see, the Sixers have a decision to make today about a fan favorite Paul Reed. You may know him as BBall Paul. A high energy big who certainly showed real flashes during the Sixers playoff run and someone who Sixers fans have been begging for years to actually get some consistent and legit run.
The only potential problem with that of course, is Danny Ainge
On the surface, a 3/23M offer for a RFA in Reed isn't that crazy. So why is this a master troll by Ainge? We had to wait for the details
My god. Danny.
Maybe this happens all the time, but I can't remember guaranteed years being tied to team success like this, and the fact that it's Ainge trolling the Sixers about only making the 2nd round is perfect. Think of how diabolical this is from Ainge. He easily could have made those parameters the ECF or something, but that would be an easy thing for PHI to match. Now? Not so much.
If the Sixers match, it pretty much ensures they are locked into all 3 years of Paul Reed's deal. If they don't and he goes to UTA, chances are the Jazz will only have to pay for Year 1. Given that the Sixers are a lock to win a round before ultimately bowing out (again), it has Daryl Morey in quite the vice grip. Does he eat into his future cap space just so he can keep Paul Reed? Or, does he let a fan favorite walk all because he doesn't want to be mouse trapped by Danny Ainge?
Add in all the luxury penalties and the fact that Reed basically gets a no trade clause for 1 year so Morey wouldn't be able to use him in any sort of in season trade without his blessing, this is just masterful trolling by one of the best GMs to ever do it. This is the sort of thing I think maybe people expected opposing teams to do with Austin Reaves and the Lakers. Force them into overspending by offering a massive offer sheet, and that never happened. Instead, the Lakers got him on a great value deal. The Sixers…well they are in a big of a different spot.
As of now, they've brought back Montrezl Harrell who ended up being unplayable and they've added Mo Bamba as well. Does that make you feel great in terms of back up options for Embiid? Ainge isn't even in the East anymore and he's still sticking it to the Sixers as if this wasn't enough
Morey has a deadline of today to decide what he wants to do about this offer sheet, and my guess is he doesn't match it. The Harrell and Bamba moves were probably the insurance, and given the cap implications and tax penalties, it wouldn't shock me if Reed is heading out to Utah.