Just days after star forward Gordon Hayward declined his $34 million player option with the Boston Celtics, he has reportedly signed a four-year, $120 million deal with the Charlotte Hornets.
Agent Mark Bartelstein of @PrioritySports confirms deal now to ESPN -- Hayward leaving the Celtics for the Hornets on a $120M free agent deal. https://t.co/OYnMbp53Xj- Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 21, 2020
Hayward signed an offer sheet with the Hornets back in 2014 as a restricted free agent, but the Utah Jazz had matched the offer to keep him in Salt Lake City. This time around, as an unrestricted free agent, Hayward will land in Charlotte.
Coming off of another injury-riddled season in Boston, but he was productive when he was on the court. Averaging 17.5 points, 6.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game shooting 50.0% from the field, 38.3% from 3 and 85.5% from the free throw line, it was Hayward's best season with the Celtics.
His time in Boston didn't go exactly as planned, suffering a fatal leg injury in his very first game with the franchise.
Signing a four-year, $128 million contract in the summer of 2017, coming off of his first and only All-Star appearance, the Celtics had high hopes of retaining a player with multiple All-Star bids in his future. Having trouble staying healthy even after the leg injury, playing in just 125 of 256 (48.8%) available regular season games, Hayward never reached his full potential but still had spirts of promise.
He now joins a Hornets roster that just selected LaMelo Ball with the No. 2 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. He also rejoins former Celtics teammate Terry Rozier along with other talented young players such as Devonte' Graham, PJ Washington and Miles Bridges. Charlotte is slowly but surely putting the pieces together to make a return to the playoffs.
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