Here’s what Brad Stevens said about acquiring Jrue Holiday


“There’s a list of guys in the league that you always think you’ve never had a real chance to get that you think are perfect fits, and Jrue is one of those guys.”

Brad Stevens speaks to the media during media day. Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff

Brad Stevens made a dramatic change to the Boston Celtics’ roster by trading for Jrue Holiday with less than 24 hours to go before media day.

Stevens doesn’t regret making that move. To him, finding a way to acquire Holiday was a no-brainer.

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“There’s a list of guys in the league that you always think you’ve never had a real chance to get that you think are perfect fits,” Stevens said at the Celtics’ media day, per ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. “And Jrue is one of those guys.”

Holiday’s resume speaks for itself. The five-time member of the NBA’s All-Defensive Team comes to Boston on the heels of his second All-Star game and two years removed from winning a championship. The 33-year-old’s stats back up his accolades, as he averaged 19.3 points, 5.1 rebounds and 7.4 assists on 47.9% shooting from the field and 38.4% from the 3-point line last season, but Stevens said that Holiday’s locker room qualities are just as illustrious as his production on the court.

“I mean, everybody can see what he does on the court. He’s a really good player, multiple time All-Star, defense has been well-documented, etc.” Stevens said, per NESN’s Sean T. McGuire. “But I think it’s…he’s an elite teammate, elite competitive character. All of those things.”

But sending Holiday to Boston didn’t come without a price. The Celtics gave up Malcolm Brogdon, Robert Williams III and draft picks in order to obtain their newest guard. Stevens acknowledged that it wasn’t an easy trade to make, especially having to say goodbye to Williams.

“I know Portland’s super excited to get [Williams],” Stevens said, per NESN’s Gio Rivera. “And that was hard, really hard.”

But it was a price Stevens knew he had to pay. But in his eyes, the potential reward far exceeded its cost.

“You got to pay a good price for things, right? That’s the way it goes. We’re trying to win a championship,” Stevens said. “This speaks to our ownership’s willingness to spend regardless and our eagerness to be the best possible team we can be.”

The Celtics will begin their quest for that championship on Sunday, with a preseason match against the Philadelphia 76ers at home. That game could be Holiday’s Celtics debut, the first of many he could play a major role in.