Bryan Colangelo joked about Danny Ainge.

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Sixers GM takes jab at Danny Ainge following trade

Ty Anderson
June 19, 2017 - 8:54 pm

With just 28 wins last year, and just 75 total wins over the last four seasons, there’s been little to celebrate for the Sixers.

But the Sixers undoubtedly view their successful trade with the Celtics in which the Sixers have nabbed the No. 1 overall pick from Boston, as their biggest one yet.

And the architect of that deal, 76ers GM Bryan Colangelo, was certainly feeling himself on Monday.

So much so that he cracked a joke at the expense of Celtics president Danny Ainge.

“Well it’s never easy negotiating with Boston because they’re smart guys -- and I’m talking about [Celtics assistant general manager] Mike Zarren and not Danny Ainge, by the way,” Colangelo said.

“I’ve been talking to Mike Zarren about this Lakers pick for about a year and a half it seems. We’ve been talking about various things that related to the draft last year, that related to the draft this year,” Colangelo, the GM of the Sixers since April 2016, said. “Once Boston got No. 1, immediately there was a discussion that talked about some of the interest we had in No. 1. That conversation led to further dialogue and it’s been consistent since the Draft Lottery. We came to a conclusion it was the right situation and the right point in the deal progression to make a deal, and we did.”

But while Colangelo’s shot fired Ainge’s way could be a bit of gamesmanship with a rival he’s expecting to battle against as the East’s next great team, it was more a sign of respect from Colangelo, who admitted that it’s difficult to do business with Ainge because they know one another so well dating back to their days with the Suns.

“It’s harder to negotiate with Boston for me because Danny Ainge, one of my former coaches, is on the other end of the phone,” Colangelo admitted. “But it was as difficult as a negotiation as they always are. Two teams have two different agendas and you try to get to a common ground and where both sides feel comfortable moving forward and making a deal.”

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