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Celtics trade rumors: Team expected to pursue big man as Rob Williams, Al Horford insurance (report)

BOSTON — The Celtics could be getting some reinforcements back at the center spot next month in Rob Williams, but that won’t stop the team from pursuing a trade for another big man according to a new report.

Adrian Wojnarowski of reported on ESPN’s NBA Countdown on Wednesday night that he anticipates the Celtics being on the hunt for big man help ahead of February’s trade deadline.

“I think for Boston now as you start to look out to the February trade deadline, I think another big man, another center who could play minutes in the case of Rob Williams missing time or a 36-year-old Al Horford being out. They are trying to close every hole they can to be a championship team. We can watch Boston as they get closer to the trade deadline, seeing if there are any frontcourt help off their bench they could acquire.” Wojnarowski said.

Boston has already been linked to Spurs center Jakob Poeltl as a potential trade target earlier this month. The team has a revolving door of big men at the end of their bench (Luke Kornet, Blake Griffin, Noah Vonleh) but Brad Stevens should have some flexibility when it comes to roster spots as the season goes on. Vonleh and swingman Justin Jackson are on non-guaranteed contracts, being they could be waived ahead of January’s deadline without any cap implications. The team also has a pair of trade exceptions that could bring in a player earning between $5 million and $7 million without using any outgoing salary.

Williams is expected to make his return from knee surgery by Christmas according to his agent Kevin Bradbury.

“That gives him another month here, he’s progressing well on his rehab,” Wojnarowski said of ESPN’s NBA Countdown. “This is a player who had two surgeries in the last calendar year. They certainly want to take their time, even without him, the Celtics have the best record in the NBA.”

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