Al Horford has already left the Celtics once for more money and there’s a chance it might happen again next summer, writes Sean Deveney of Heavy. The 37-year-old Horford said this week that he’d like to play another two or three seasons, so he’ll be looking for a contract that covers that time. Whether that keeps him in Boston will depend on the salary he’s willing to accept.
Deveney talked to a Western Conference executive who points out that most of the teams that will have cap room in 2023 are young and aren’t likely to have interest in a player nearing 40. The unidentified executive expects Horford to land a two-year contract worth between $20-25MM, while another league source tells Deveney that Horford may get a three-year deal in the $40-42MM range with the final year as a partial guarantee or a player option.
An Eastern Conference executive believes the Celtics’ offer to Horford will depend on how much they have to pay to keep Grant Williams, who is headed for restricted free agency.
“Right now, you’re paying those guys $30MM,” the executive said. “They don’t want to add a bunch of salary, so if you can keep them below $30MM in starting money next year, it is not a bad situation. Other guys are going up, so you’d like to save where you can. If you start Williams at $16-17MM or so, you can go to $11-12MM for Al and still keep yourself around $180MM in payroll. They want both of those guys around so they have to think about them as a sliding scale.”
There’s more on the Celtics:
- Boston has the league’s best record at 13-3 and has figured out how to win with limited production from Jayson Tatum, notes Souichi Terada of MassLive. The Celtics posted back-to-back wins over the Hawks and Pelicans this week with Tatum limited to 19 points in each game on subpar shooting. Derrick White and Payton Pritchard have filled in with Malcolm Brogdon and Marcus Smart hurt, and the team is also getting valuable bench minutes from Williams, Sam Hauser and Luke Kornet.
- Jaylen Brown credits the success to trust from new head coach Joe Mazzulla, per Brian Robb of MassLive. Whenever the Celtics hit a rough patch, Mazzulla usually prefers to let the players work through it rather than calling a timeout. “It challenges us for not only the situation at hand in front of us but to be better down the line,” Brown said. “We’ve been in the NBA long enough to know how to get to our spots and how to correct some of our mistakes. We have a poised team so that’s a lot of trust from our head coach that he instills in our players and us to figure it out. To be honest, that’s what you want as a player. You want that relationship with your head coach that he’ll trust you out there that you’ll figure it out.”
- With nine straight wins, the Celtics appear to have solved their crunch-time rotation questions, according to Jared Weiss of The Athletic. Tatum’s ability to fill multiple roles makes the team hard to defend with the game on the line, Weiss adds.
11 thoughts on “Celtics Notes: Horford, G. Williams, Brown, Mazzulla”
Horford only plays well in Boston. That salary figure is ridiculous. He has earned half the mid-level for soaking up 27 million in cap this season. $16-24mm 2-3 year contract seems appropriate. Where else is he going to contend, or be a major rotation player?
Yeah, Horford only plays well in Boston, he only made four All-Star appearances in Atlanta. How pathetic!
Agree. As he nears 40 yrs old and can’t play back-to-backs I’m not sure he has all the leverage he had several years ago.
Yeah totally. No other team needs a big who defends well, Who can bring the ball up the floor and passes well and who shoots the three extremely well. Especially one who is universally liked by his teammates and coaches. Just Boston.
Bigs who shoot 47 percent from three cant get jobs anywhere.
13 games in…he’ll be at 35-36% by year’s end.
Maybe, maybe not. Either way any team would want it from a big.
So what you’re saying is no team needs an effective scorer who can also mentor a team’s younger players?
Can’t see a world in which Boston keeps Horford and Grant Will. Celtics undervalued Grant in extension talks by a fair amount and Horford is looking for a 2/3 year deal. Grant might be thinking I want to start and I’m not getting that opportunity if they keep Horford too.
My guess is one of them stays but I wouldn’t be surprised if both left. They should pay Grant and keep him. He’s perfect as a tweener PF. Spaces the floor well, communicates well on defence and can handle most of his match ups well. Already been on the team and while and knows the guys.
Doubt either player is traded too cause Boston wants to win and their best chance of that is with these two and not to mention they also want to keep both. Wonder if they have any interest in a Grant Williams for Jae Crowder plus picks type deal. Jae returns back offers the same kinda skill set but better 1 on 1 defence and a veteran presence. He’s been on the Celtics and some well maybe he’d want to return and resign on a decent deal. Grant in Pheonix would be great. His defence and shooting and the fit with Ayton at centre would be so nice
Boston doesn’t want Crowder.
Another story out there just to stir the pot, get the writer’s name known & cause some unwarranted trouble. Al just said he loves Boston & wants to stay. He fits well here & not so well elsewhere as has already been shown.