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Rumor: Celtics want Gordon Hayward around for the long haul

Gordon Hayward, Celtics

The Boston Celtics have no plans of moving forward Gordon Hayward, instead looking to keep him as part of the team’s future. Hayward has a player option he can pick up at the end of this season. If he does, it could be an expensive 2020-21 season for the Celtics, who could be paying a hefty $34.1 million for a player who has basically only delivered in one of his three years with the team.

Hayward memorably suffered a nasty season-ending injury in the first minutes of his season debut as a Celtic, then struggled to adjust in his second season before getting back to his former self this season.

According to Brian Robb of The Boston Sports Journal, price will always be a point of contention with the Celtics, who are now paying premiums to Kemba Walker and Jaylen Brown and soon to do the same with future centerpiece Jayson Tatum. However, the franchise would still like to keep Hayward around for the long haul.

Many saw Hayward’s contract as the most likely to be moved, considering he’s now a sell-high candidate due to his strong start to the season. Along with his 17.2 points per game, he’s posting career highs in rebounding (6.5 per game) and shooting percentage (51.2% from the field).

Gordon Hayward has molded along well to being that complementary piece, giving up a few shots and making the most of his opportunities with his newfound efficiency. He holds increased value considering he can step up as a leading scorer when need be, giving the Celtics an ace in the hole they have lacked the past two seasons.