First, this is all posturing. Ainge isn't stupid enough to let a role player hang up a chance to acquire a Top 10 player in the league.
Second, as for the unrequited love of Crowder's contract in this thread, were that true - and I doubt it is - then Celtics fans would have a CLEAR message from Grousbeck and the owners: We're cheap, and we're happy just being relevant. Forget about Banner 18.
If y'all are so attached to Jae Crowder, then maybe Ainge should offer Chitown TGJB - The Great Jaylen Brown.
Personally, I'd need to know what the proposed deal is to fully evaluate what Aldridge is saying. I know this: I'm ready to move Avery Bradley. Achilles issues don't just go away in the dark of night, and when they return, value plummets.
The cheap contract isn't just value for the owners' pockets. It's value in the effort of team building. Whether or not it's overvalued is a different argument. But I don't think it's accurate to assume it's about the financial bottom line.
If you're serious about a championship, you don't allow a role player on a cheap contract to become an albatross - unless you've got the Green Teamer glasses on as an owner and said role player is one of your "favorites."
If that's the case, you're not going to build a champion anyway. Your judgment is fatally clouded.
It's definitely more complicated than that. This isn't baseball; bill barnwell, when writing about NFL, talks about "opportunity costs" a lot. Due to the cap, players are not added in a vacuum, and additions have consequences, and it it worth keeping those in perspective. We don't know a lot of behind the scenes stuff, but grabbing Butler and his contract now represents loss of players and loss of space. So it's not just "is Butler better than Crowder," but "for the next 3 years, is Butler better than Hayward, Fulz/Ball/Jackson, and Crowder," which is a legit question. Butler is not on the level of Durant/James/Anthony Davis/Curry, etc. He has a shaky 3 point shot, which makes me worried a little about the duration and sustainability of his prime. Also, this is by far his best year, by a lot, which makes me legit concerned it is not the "new normal," but rather could easily be a bit of a fluke year. So you also have to keep in mind you might be giving up what we'd be giving up for the Jimmy Butler of last year and the year before, rather than the Butler of this year, which is another half step down.