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Report: Celtics, Hornets trying to work out sign-and-trade with Gordon Hayward, but there’s a snag

Gordon Hayward, Hornets, Celtics

Gordon Hayward has already agreed to a four-year, $120 million deal with the Charlotte Hornets. However, as ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports, the Hornets and Boston Celtics are still trying to work out a sign-and-trade.

There’s a bit of a snag, though.

The Celtics are looking to land a large trade exception as part of the deal, but the Hornets are trying to bring a third party into the mix in an effort to avoid waiving Nic Batum’s $27 million contract.

If Charlotte has to waive and stretch Batum’s deal, that would add $9 million to the books in each of the next three seasons. All in all, the acquisition of Hayward could cost Charlotte up to $147 million over four years. Notably, the Hornets would be paying more for Hayward than the Celtics were.

To some, this was an ill-advised contract offer from the Hornets. Still, there are others who feel that Hayward will be able to help the team on the perimeter.

Other teams were interested in Gordon Hayward, who decided to opt out of his $34.2 million player option with the Celtics. The New York Knicks were said to be keeping an eye on the former Butler Bulldog, and the Indiana Pacers were trying to work out a sign-and-trade of their own. However, Charlotte’s offer was just too good to pass up.

Through 52  appearances last regular season, Gordon Hayward turned in averages of 17.5 points on 50.0 percent shooting from the field (38.3 percent from beyond the arc), 6.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists. Steadily, his numbers have increased since recovering from what was one of the worst leg injuries in NBA history in 2017.

For now, we’ll have to wait and see if the Celtics and Hornets find an interested third party. Boston would love to get that massive trade exception in order to add more talent.