Robb: Don't Count On A Hayward-For Crowder Sign-And


Thanking Utah fans on his way out the door, Hayward stressed how tight his bond with Celtics coach Brad Stevens is, with the two having previously worked together at Butler University.

"Certainly we will miss Gordon and his many contributions to our team, but I always tell our players that 'adversity is opportunity in disguise, '" Jazz coach Quin Snyder said in a statement.

Gordon Hayward left South Florida on Saturday sold on the possibilities of signing with the Miami Heat, only to change his mind a day later in his meeting with the Boston Celtics.

The 2016-17 season also saw him getting selected to his first All-Star game in his National Basketball Association career. And the deal will have effects on teams other than the Celtics and Utah Jazz, for whom Hayward has played the past seven years.

According to Hayward, joining the Celtics gives him the opportunity to fulfill the goal that he and Stevens failed to do when they were at Butler - "to win a championship". And today ... well, today has definitely been one of the craziest days of my life.

They earned the No. 1 seed in the East without him, with Isaiah Thomas rising and Al Horford, Avery Bradley, Jae Crowder, Marcus Smart and all the rest finishing 53-29 in the regular season before they fell to the Cavs in five games in the Eastern Conference Finals.

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The 27-year-old had his best year this past season, averaging nearly 22 points a game while shooting 47 percent from the floor and nearly 40 percent from the three-point line.

Before Tuesday, Hayward was deciding between the Celtics, the Miami Heat or the team he previously played with, the Utah Jazz.

And when you add in the Celtics mystique, history and opportunity here the next half-dozen years, you really had only one decision. They just signed Hayward, one of the best wings in the game, and they have a pair of promising youngsters at the position in second-year Jaylen Brown and rookie Jayson Tatum, who they just drafted with the No. 3 pick in June. The first time All-Star led the Jazz to their first post-season in four years.

The 33-year-old American forward, who also won a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, has averaged 19.2 points, 8.5 rebounds and 2 assists per game during his career. He made what he thinks is the right decision for him.

The Sacramento Kings agreed to free-agent deals with point guard George Hill and power forward Zach Randolph, according to published reports.