Does addition of Jrue Holiday make the Celtics the favorites in the East? | Good Word with Goodwill

Yahoo Sports NBA writer Vince Goodwill hopped on the “Good Word With ” podcast to talk about the Portland Trail Blazers trade of Jrue Holiday to the Boston Celtics in exchange for Malcolm Brogdon, Robert Williams and picks, and explain why he’s not ready to crown the Buck and the Celtics as the Kings of the East just yet.

Hear the full conversation on “Good Word with Goodwill” - part of the “Ball Don’t Lie” podcast - and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you listen.

Video Transcript


VINCENT GOODWILL: On Sunday afternoon, the Portland Trail Blazers traded Jrue Holiday to the Boston Celtics. So Boston acquires Jrue Holiday. They trade Robert Williams III. They also trade Malcolm Brogdon, a 2024 first round draft pick from The Golden State Warriors, and they get an unprotected pick from the Celtics, a first rounder in 2029.

Who knows if Portland's going to keep Rob Williams III, but they're probably going to move on from Malcolm Brogdon, who had been shopped by the Celtics pretty much all summer as part of their Kristaps Porzingis deal. A few notes here. The Boston Celtics, it looks like they have completely loaded up for this season because you got Jrue Holiday with his money, Kristaps Porzingis with his deal. Both of those guys are expiring or can expire after this season.

Kristaps Porzingis, a guy that can't stay healthy. Al Horford, a guy who can't stay healthy and his aging. But in Jrue Holiday, you have basically replaced Marcus Smart, who was dealt to Memphis earlier in the offseason. Some people would say, acquiring Jrue Holiday, taking some ball handling responsibilities away from a guy like Jaylen Brown who struggled in that category, that this sort of elevates Boston maybe even over the Milwaukee Bucks considering the last time these two teams played in the playoff series Boston won after trailing three games to two.

Either way, it's an arms race in the Eastern Conference. I will caution all of us who are very, very quick to say this is the definitive Eastern Conference Finals. Neither team has the best coach and neither team has continuity. Like, you're bringing in really, really big pieces and you're changing the fabric of your team.

I am not going to summarily dismiss the Miami Heat from the discussion. It is true that they look like they might be a step behind in terms of experience, in terms of top level basketball talent. But the last time we wrote off the Miami Heat, we spent May and June in Miami. There still could be moves made.

I would love to know what Joel Embiid is thinking. Philadelphia has virtually done nothing. And they walk into camp with a disgruntled James Harden while watching every other team in the East get better. So while we think about Milwaukee and Boston, I would love to see Jrue Holiday and Dame Lillard in a high stakes playoff match-up. Their first regular season match-up, November 20 in Milwaukee, Jrue Holiday returning back to the place that he thought he was going to finish his career.