The Boston Celtics are on the verge of acquiring Courtney Lee from Houston via a sign-and-trade for JaJuan Johnson, a source confirmed to CSNNE.com.
The deal was first reported by Yahoo! Sports.
While the deal is still being finalized, it's expected to include a future second-round pick being sent from Boston to Houston.
The last sentence is the key. JaJuan Johnson is a decent player and should aid in the Rockets' quest to reach the top of the Empire's State Building solely by placing power forwards on top of each other, but the picks are the object of Daryl Morey's affection. Hopefully another second-round pick is involved, but if it's just one, it's another asset for Morey to gleefully play with.
So why trade Lee? He was certainly a breakout player once Kevin Martin went down and showed off a two-way game that many fans wanted to keep under contract. But if the Rockets were to re-sign Lee, they'd have trouble taking on more money in a potential Dwight Howard trade. So Morey decided to work a sign-and-trade to try and get something back for him. Johnson and a second-round pick do not mimic Lee's overall worth, so that's a little disappointing, but the fact that the Rockets were able to find a trade partner is also encouraging.
I have a feeling there is a little more behind this, so stick around, we'll keep you updated. This sort of plays to that thinking:
@EricPincus: Not saying Lee/Boston isn't accurate - just that Johnson/Lee itself doesn't work and Boston doesn't have TPE
In the meantime, big thanks to Courtney for playing his butt off as a Rocket. Here's hoping him much success in the future.
UPDATE (4:36 CT)
Yup. More players coming. Hope you all like Purdue.
RT @SteveBHoop: Celtics will send E'Twaun Moore, JaJuan Johnson, Sean Williams and 2nd rd pick in Courtney Lee trade.
UPDATE 2 (4:39 CT)
Marc Spears says the second-round pick coming from Boston is actually going to come from Charlotte (one that they owed the Celtics). So, basically a late late first-rounder.