The Marcus Morris Conundrum

One of the bigger surprises coming out of this Celtics season is the emergence of Marcus Morris. The dude’s been an absolute fucking stud. After Kyrie Irving, I have no issue saying Morris has been the second-best player for Boston. I know that everybody in Boston loves staying on JaysonTatum’s jockstrap, but you’re a fool to think he’s played better than Morris. Tatum’saveraging about 2 more points a game than Mook Morris, but defense is what separates the two. The youngin (Tatum) gets blocks here and there but has been a rubbish on-ball defender this season. This isn’t a Tatum bashing article though, so I’ll stick to the topic. Marcus Morris SR. is playing the best basketball of his lifetime and it’s actually a problem for the Boston Celtics. How you ask; well that’s what we’re here to discuss.

Free Agency

After this season, Marcus Morris is going to be a free agent. His performance thus far is well worthy of a juicy contract, especially with him still under 30 years old. Morris’ current averages are 15ppg, 1.5apg, and6.2rpg. His impact is felt well beyond those numbers. Since being inserted in the starting lineup, the Celtics are 9-2. I’m a Celtics fan and seeing this success is making me feel some ways I haven’t felt since the playoff run last season 😉. With all this said, the man of the hour is a free agent at the end of this season. You’re probably reading this and thinking to yourself, “yea just pay the dude”. Unfortunately, Kyrie Irving is also a free agent at the end of the season. Irving already committed to coming back to Boston and it’ll end up being on a max contract. The Celtics already have Hayward and Horford on max contracts meaning that money is gonna be real tight for the boys in Beantown. With Morris being so pivotal to the team’s success, Danny Ainge has many things to consider this upcoming offseason.

Is It Possible?

The NBA has a salary cap which means that teams can only pay the players on their team so much before getting penalized. The penalty for going over the salary cap is called the luxury tax. The luxury tax makes the money come from the owner’s pockets incentivizing them to not go over the league-wide salary cap. The good teams tend to be fine going over the cap as they drive in loads of revenue with expensive tickets and late playoff runs. The only way for this situation to be possible for the Celtics and Morris is if he is willing to take a short term 1-2 year contract. The Celtics can only commit to this short amount of time because of Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. In 2 years, Brown will be ready to sign a longer term deal. The same can be said for Tatum in 3 years. Those 2 are the future of Boston and have more control over what the Celtics will do moving forward. As for Morris, he is going to want to cash out for as long as he can. He will more than likely want a 4 year deal worth as much money as he can get offered to him. This back and forth will probably be the most intriguing for the Celtics upcoming offseason.

Likely Outcome

I hate to say this because I love the guy in Boston, but there is a very small chance Marcus Morris SR. is a member of the Boston Celtics next season. The only way he stays is if he loves Boston so much that he is willing to take a short-term deal and a discount. This can be handled in one of two ways. The first and easy option is to just allow him to walk in free agency and be thankful for everything he did for the team. However, this is the option that absolutely sucks. For as good as he is, losing him with nothing in return is an utter waste of resources. What the Celtics should do is package him in a tradeby the trade deadline. If he continues this incredible play, the Celtics should be able to acquire some young pieces in return for Morris. This is an odd situation where I am okay with letting him walk somehow. If he can help deliver Boston a title this season, we can’t be upset with him flexing on the league and making big bucks somewhere else. Let’s all just enjoy the ride with Marcus Morris while we can. The dude’s shitting on the league and we get to enjoy it.

-Brandon Black

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