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Report: Celtics interested in Suns forward P.J. Tucker

Phoenix Suns' P.J. Tucker gestures after being called for a foul during the second half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors on Saturday, Dec. 3, 2016, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
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Add the Boston Celtics to the list of teams with a reported interest in Suns forward P.J. Tucker, per Sean Deveney of Sporting News.

In a post primarily about the Celtics’ interest in Bulls guard Jimmy Butler, Deveney mentioned that the Celtics may not need to swing a huge trade to challenge the injured Cleveland Cavaliers.

They can do that without Butler, instead trying to make a minor move for a contributor like Suns forward P.J. Tucker. Boston has expressed deep interest in Tucker ahead of the deadline, a source said. Get Tucker, and the Celtics can add depth without giving up on a potential No. 1 pick. And there is cap space available this summer to sign a player in free agency. Without trading for Butler, Boston could keep the pick and get a name player this summer.

Tucker is an amiable 31-year-old veteran who would fit well in Boston’s locker room.

The market for Tucker has reportedly been strong. In January, reports said the Hawks, Timberwolves, Cavaliers and Bulls all were after Tucker. The Clippers reportedly offered a second-round pick for his services and were rebuffed by Phoenix.

The Suns’ price for Tucker has been a first-round selection, but that price might drop ahead of Thursday’s trade deadline. The 31-year-old forward is averaging seven points, six rebounds amd 1.5 steals in 28.5 minutes per game. He is in the final year of a three-year deal with Phoenix and is making about $5.5 million this season.

Whether the Celtics try to trade for a superstar like Butler or a rotation player like Tucker, the veteran forward from Texas will be a name to watch as the Thursday deadline approaches.

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