The Celtics have told Amir Johnson they will pick up his option unless they issue two maximum contracts, according to Sean Deveney of The Sporting News. Johnson, who signed with the Celtics last summer, would make $12MM next season if Boston does pick up his option. The Celtics have until Thursday to make a decision on the 29-year-old power forward, who started 76 games this season, averaging 7.3 points and 6.4 rebounds.
There’s more this morning out of Boston:
- The commitment by Al Horford Saturday night has started dreams of a new Big Three in Boston, Deveney writes in the same piece. The Celtics are hoping Kevin Durant may be more inclined to join a franchise that now has two All-Stars on its roster in Horford and Isaiah Thomas, along with the stability of coach Brad Stevens and GM Danny Ainge, who both received contract extensions last month. The Celtics are coming off a 48-win season and have a collection of young players and draft picks that they can use to acquire more veteran help.
- The Celtics contingent was on a plane Saturday night and ready to leave New York when it learned the news about Horford, writes Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe. Horford agreed to a four-year, $113MM max offer, with the fourth year reportedly a player option. He will be able to sign when the moratorium ends on Thursday. “Ever since Boston, Danny Ainge and the whole organization began to show interest in him, that opened his eyes,” said Horford’s father, Tito, who said the decision came down to the Celtics or Hawks. “He always had a good feel about Boston.”
- The Horford signing takes away the sting of not being able to complete a deal for Jimmy Butler on draft night, states Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe. Washburn writes that the Bulls wanted two first-round picks and a package of veterans to part with Butler. Both Thomas and Jae Crowder reached out to Horford during the recruiting process, selling him on the merits of living in Boston.