Given Gordon Hayward‘s close, long-standing relationship with Celtics head coach Brad Stevens, the veteran forward finds himself in a tricky situation this fall, writes Sean Deveney of Forbes. Hayward may be able to secure a lucrative, longer-term deal if he opts out of his contract with Boston, but in that scenario he’d reward the team’s trust and patience in him by walking away without allowing Stevens and the Celtics to get anything in return.
On the other hand, if Hayward opts into the final year of his contract, the Celtics could turn around and explore the trade market for him, perhaps ultimately sending him to a destination that he wouldn’t have chosen as a free agent. The Celtics and Hayward have “a more personal stake in this than just basketball and money,” according to Deveney, who suggests that history will complicate both sides’ decisions.
Here’s more from around the Atlantic:
- Within his story on the Sixers‘ hiring of Daryl Morey, Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer says executives around the NBA would be shocked if the team breaks up the Joel Embiid/Ben Simmons duo during the coming offseason or the 2020/21 season. That lines up with what Elton Brand said publicly over the summer, and it sounds like Morey’s arrival won’t change that.
- The Knicks, who recently worked out Kira Lewis Jr., are seriously considering the former Alabama guard, according to Marc Berman of The New York Post. However, Berman says it’s not clear whether Lewis would receive serious consideration at No. 8 or if he’s only an option in the event of a trade down.
- Alex Schiffer and John Hollinger of The Athletic team up to evaluate a few hypothetical trades involving the Nets, including separate proposals in which Brooklyn acquires John Collins, Buddy Hield, and Jrue Holiday, among others.