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The Boston Celtics are finalizing a deal that would send JaJuan Johnson, E’Twaun Moore, Sean Williams and a 2nd round draft pick to the Rockets in a sign-and-trade for Courtney Lee. The contracts the Celtics would send out in this deal would allow the team to pay Lee a starting salary of $4.25 million. The Celtics would have to sign Lee to a contract with a minimum of three years attached to it.
The four-year vet, Lee, has career averages of 10 points, three rebounds and one steal per game. Lee spent two seasons with the Rockets and a year a piece with the Magic and Nets. In 2009, his rookie season, Lee was the starting shooting guard in the playoffs for the Magic on their run to an NBA Finals berth.
After the Celtics used their full mid-level exception to sign Jason Terry yesterday, they were limited to only using their $1.7 million bi-annual exception or a sign-and-trade to acquire further talent. It appears Danny Ainge has pulled off the latter to acquire the guy the team wanted.
Doc Rivers sat down with Lee last week to discuss the possibility of putting the guard in Celtics’ green next season. During the meeting the two shared a mutual appreciation for the other’s work while both were uncertain how the union would work financially.
Lee’s acquisition caps off a stellar reloading job by Ainge. After what appears to be a well executed draft, the Celtics went out and quickly locked up Kevin Garnett and Terry. After Ainge missed out on Ray Allen, he responded by bringing back Brandon Bass, Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox.
After the deal is completed, the Celtics’ roster for the 2012-2013 season will sit at the league minimum of 12 players. With the Bi-annual exception still at their disposal and the strong performance of Dionte Christmas on their summer league squad deserving of a minimum deal, the Celtics team for next season is beginning to take full shape.