Prior to joining the Boston Celtics during free agency in 2017, Gordon Hayward was the star of the Utah Jazz. In his final season with Utah, Hayward made the NBA All-Star team and averaged 21.9 points, 5.4 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game on 39.8 percent shooting from 3-point range.
In his very first game with the Boston Celtics on opening night of the 2017-18 NBA season, Hayward played just five minutes before suffering a gruesome, season-ending leg injury. He joined the team once again to start the 2018-19 season after a long year of rehab and recovery.
After a rocky start to the season, Hayward was demoted from a starter to Boston’s sixth man. He just hasn’t been the same player since his horrible injury.
Perhaps a team would be willing to take a risk on Hayward, thinking a fresh start might be good for him. He was the fourth or fifth scoring option on a loaded Celtics team, which did not fare him well. Being back on a team as the No. 1 or 2 option may fit his skill-set better.
In the 2018-19 season, Hayward averaged 11.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game. His 11.5 points per game were only sixth on the entire team despite playing 25.9 minutes per contest.
Hayward is set to make around $32.7 million next season followed by a player option for the 2020-21 season worth $34.2 million. With a contract that large, it may be in Boston’s best interest to work on moving him. His production since joining the Celtics has been worth nowhere near that much money.