There were no two ways around it: the Boston Celtics needed to make a roster move in order to bring in Gordon Hayward.
After Hayward announced he’d be leaving the Utah Jazz to join the Celtics, Boston reportedly began shopping a slew of players, including Avery Bradley, Jae Crowder and Marcus Smart in hopes of clearing cap space. And as we learned Friday morning, Bradley was the odd man out.
The C’s agreed to trade Bradley and a 2019 second-round pick to the Detroit Pistons in exchange for Marcus Morris. But even after dealing Bradley, many believed Boston still would shop Crowder, now with new-found leverage. But according to The Boston Globe’s Adam Himmelsbach, that’s not the case.
This doesn’t come as a total surprise, as Crowder is a great asset for the Celtics for a number of reasons. He’s a great defender and has become one of the more accurate 3-point shooters in the NBA. Not to mention, he’s on an extremely team-friendly contract. He inked a five-year, $35 million deal prior to the 2015-16 season, which keeps him under team control through the 2019-20 campaign.
In today’s seemingly positionless NBA, the C’s could use Crowder in multiple ways. It’s likely he’ll concede his typical small forward spot in the starting lineup for Hayward, but it wouldn’t be shocking to see Crowder start at power forward. Celtics coach Brad Stevens is a matchup mastermind, so it should be interesting to see how he uses the six-year veteran.
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