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According to agent Mark Bartelstein, the Celtics have reached out to unrestricted free agent David Lee, who has spent the first five seasons with the Knicks. Lee had his best season last year, as he averaged 20.2 points and 11.7 rebounds over 81 games. Lee was the first member of the Knicks to be chosen for the All-Star team since 2001, when Allan Houston and Latrell Sprewell made the squad.
Lee’s agent also confirmed the forward/center has several other potential suitors, including the Heat, Bulls, T-Wolves, and Nets. The former star at Florida could also return to the Knicks, especially if the team misses out on LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and/or Chris Bosh.
“We’re going to stay in communication [with New York], but they’re kind of doing their thing and we’re kind of doing our thing, and we’ll see if the timing works out for each other,” Bartelstein said. “This stuff, something could happen at any time. There’s no way to predict the timing of it.”
It’s clear the Celtics need size after being out-rebounded badly in Games 6 and 7 against the Lakers with Kendrick Perkins out of the lineup and Rasheed Wallace limited, and Lee would provide that size. At only 6’9″, Lee positions himself extremely well under the boards, and has averaged more than 10 rebounds per game over the last four seasons.
Unfortunately for the Celtics, they don’t have much cap room to work with, and Lee may be an alternative if the team can’t re-sign Paul Pierce and/or Ray Allen. Though it’s likely Pierce and Allen will re-sign, Danny Ainge could possibly be thinking of adding Lee using the team’s mid-level exception, which will be free with Rasheed Wallace retiring. Lee would probably make a lot more money elsewhere, so Lee joining the Celtics may be a pipe dream.
What do you think?