NBA Trade Deadline: In a Rarity, the Boston Celtics and LA Lakers Reportedly Talking Deal

The NBA trade deadline can make teams do strange things. A perfect example is the Sacramento Kings doing Sacramento King-like things and making a one-sided trade that’s not in their favor. Another is having the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers come together to try and work out a deal.

The Boston Celtics last made a trade with the LA Lakers in 2004

LeBron James #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers dribbles past Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics during the first half at Staples Center on December 07, 2021, in Los Angeles, California. | Harry How/Getty Images.

Bitter rivals forever, the Celtics and Lakers haven’t come together to swing a deal in 18 years. Published reports have the two working together to pull off a rare deal.

The last time the Celtics and Lakers came together to work with each other was in 2004 when Boston acquired veteran point guard Gary Payton. The Celtics traded Chucky Atkins, Jumaine Jones, and Chris Mihm in exchange for Payton, Rick Fox, and a first-round pick in 2006.

Fox, originally drafted by the Celtics in 1991, played six years with the Celtics. He elected to retire rather than return to Boston for a second stint. The Celtics did make good with the ’06 draft pick, selecting point guard Rajon Rondo.

Before then, the teams have only hooked up two more times in the trade department. In 1999, the Celtics sent Travis Knight to LA for Tony Battie.

In 1977, Boston sent Charlie Scott for Kermit Washington, Don Chaney, and a first-round pick.

Reports have the Boston Celtics and LA Lakers talking about a deal involving Josh Richardson

The Celtics can go in any number of ways at the deadline, but the plan appears to build around their two young stars in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.

Two names that pop up the most from the Celtics roster are Josh Richardson and Dennis Schroder. Richardson, the seven-year veteran who spent time with the Miami Heat, Philadelphia 76ers, and Dallas Mavericks, has drawn interest from the Utah Jazz and the Minnesota Timberwolves, but Brian Robb of MassLive is reporting the Lakers have been in recent pursuit.

Robb reported the Lakers have been shopping a package of Talen Horton-Tucker, Kendrick Nunn, and a future first-round pick around the league for weeks. He said sources have told MassLive that the Lakers have offered Horton-Tucker and a future pick for Richardson.

Horton-Tucker was a second-round pick by the Orlando Magic in 2019. The 6-foot-4 guard has been woeful from three-point land this year, hitting at a 24.8% clip. He’s young and shows promise, but the Celtics seemingly will wait until the last moment for the best off if they do send Richardson packing.

The red-hot Celtics may decide to stick with what they have

The Celtics are as hot as they’ve been this year, winning six straight games and eight of their last nine. At 31-25, they are seeded seventh in the Eastern Conference but find themselves just 4.5 games out of first place.

It’s been a wild roller-coaster ride for the Celtics under first-year coach Ime Udoka. While it appears they have righted the ship, the teams they’ve beaten during this streak haven’t been world-beaters. Earlier in the season, however, they may have lost to these teams the way they had been playing.

They’re a tough bunch to figure out. In all likelihood, the Celtics will continue with their usual plan at the deadline and make a minor move or two.

Schroder appears to be on his way out. He’s a player in the final year of his deal looking for a huge payday. Things could get interesting in Boston the next two days, especially if their trading partner is their longtime rival.

RELATED: The Celtics Are Reportedly Concerned Jaylen Brown Will Demand a Trade, but Boston Has Options