Al Horford reportedly is opting out of his contract with the Boston Celtics, but that isn’t necessarily an indication he has his eyes set elsewhere.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported Tuesday morning that Horford will forgo the final year of his deal with the C’s, which was set to pay him $30.1 million, and hit unrestricted free agency. The caveat to that is Horford and the Celtics were mutually interested in working out a new deal, which presumably would give the five-time All-Star a chance to have some decent term on a new contract while still making similar money.
Basketball Insiders’ Steve Kyler was asked on Twitter if there’s a chance Horford would move on from the Celtics altogether. Kyler explained why that’s unlikely.
With Kyrie Irving having one foot out the door, keeping Horford around should be a priority for the Celtics. They might have no choice but to really start leaning on their youngsters, in which case having Horford there to provide leadership and experience, in addition to his on-court abilities, is pivotal.