NBA Free Agency 2020: Charlotte Hornets sign Gordon Hayward for $120m, create NBA history

NBA Free Agency 2020: Gordon Hayward opted out of his $34.2 million contract option with the Boston Celtics to became an unrestricted free agent. The Charlotte Hornets agreed to a deal with the forward worth $120 million over four years.

The Celtics will reportedly send unprotected picks in both 2023 and 2024 to the Hornets to complete this deal. Boston will acquire a heavily protected second-round pick from Charlotte.

The Boston Celtics also have an extra second-round pick in 2023. They also have their own second-round pick in 2024. Charlotte is likely to send a top-55 protected second-rounder to Boston.

Hayward’s first-year salary is about $28.5 million and Boston will create a Trade player exception equal to that value. That $28.5 million TPE is the largest in NBA history.

Also Read: All about the deal Toronto Raptors offered to keep Fred VanVleet.

Hayward was an All-Star in 2016-17 for the Utah Jazz. He averaged 21.9 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. He remains someone who can score from the perimeter, score over smaller defenders in the lane, and provide some strong rebounding from the wing.

Largest Trade Player exception in NBA history.

In his time at the Boston Celtics, Gordon Hayward averaged 17.5 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game. He shot 50 percent from the field and 38.3 percent from three-point range.

By signing Gordon Hayward, the Boston Celtics have created the largest trade player exception of $28.5.

How will Gordon Hayward improve the Charlotte Hornets?

In his time at the Boston Celtics, Gordon Hayward averaged 17.5 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game. He shot 50 percent from the field and 38.3 percent from three-point range.

The team fell short of the NBA Finals, though, as he suffered an injury in Game 1 of the first round against the Philadelphia 76ers. He did not return until Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Miami Heat.

There are some injury concerns with Hayward, and he turns 31 years old in March.

Charlotte is taking steps toward being competitive in the Eastern Conference with Hayward joining No. 3 overall pick LaMelo Ball on the team. The front office likely has more work to do before making the Hornets a playoff team, but this is a step in the right direction.