Gordon Hayward plans to sign a four-year, $120 million deal with the Charlotte Hornets, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Hayward’s decision to sign with the Hornets ends a tenuous three-year relationship with the Boston Celtics.
It’s not expected that the Celtics will get anything in return via sign and trade for Hayward’s departure.
Instead, the Hornets plan to waive Nicolas Batum’s $27.1 expiring contract to create the salary cap space needed to sign Hayward.
Hayward’s time in Boston was marred by various injuries, including and epitomized by a gruesome leg injury minutes in to his Celtics career.
Now Hayward will have an opportunity to play a similar role to what he had with the Utah Jazz as the first or second option in the offense.
Hayward is still capable of playing at an elite level – evident by his stats from last year averaging 18PPG, 7RPG, and 4APG on 50% shooting from the field, 38% shooting from three, and 86% shooting from the line.
Not to mention that Hayward only had an average 19% usage rate in his three years in Boston.
The Celtics will look to second year player Romeo Langford and rookie Aaron Nesmith – both #14 picks in the NBA Draft – to fill Hayward’s absence at the wing.