Celtics Interested In J.R. Smith

The Celtics are interested in adding J.R. Smith, who has carried a contract impasse with the Cavaliers from the summer into the preseason, Frank Isola of the New York Daily News reports.

The Celtics can only offer Smith a salary starting at $9MM unless they make a trade to clear cap space, as Isola notes. Avery Bradley is the Celtics’ starting shooting guard. The Celtics are in the market for Smith in an effort to bolster their second unit’s scoring, Isola adds.

Other teams are interested in Smith, who is still likely to re-sign with the Cavs, Isola adds. Smith has been reportedly wanting a $15MM annual salary, while the Cavs prefer to sign him to a contract in the $10MM to $12MM range. Smith, 31, started a career-high 77 games for the Cavs during the 2015/16 season, and also started all 21 of the team’s playoff games. During the season, he averaged 12.4 PPG and shot 40.0% from long distance, making 2.6 threes per game.

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