A breakdown of the NBA’s biggest free-agency moves
Gordon Hayward, Danilo Gallinari — and even Chris Bosh — set off fireworks on Independence Day
While many of us were living it up at cookouts, eating our auntie’s potato salad and busting a move to our favorite family function jam, NBA executives, agents and beat writers were hard at work. The Fourth of July is always a huge day on the NBA calendar, and this year’s free-agency fireworks did not disappoint.
Here’s a breakdown of the biggest moves that went down on Independence Day.
Gordon hayward chooses Celtics over jazz and heat
After seven seasons with the Utah Jazz, Gordon Hayward, the crown jewel of this year’s NBA free-agency market, chucked up the deuces to Salt Lake City in dramatic fashion. ESPN’s Chris Haynes originally reported that Hayward had decided to sign with the Boston Celtics after also considering joining the Miami Heat and remaining with the Jazz. However, shortly afterward, Hayward’s agent told ESPN that despite Haynes’ report, his client had yet to complete a deal.
Five hours later, the man himself confirmed his decision, that he was in fact signing with the Celtics, in an announcement he wrote for The Players’ Tribune.
Hayward’s move didn’t sit too well with folks in Utah, especially his now former teammate Rudy Gobert.
Danilo GallinarI headed to the clippers
The Los Angeles Clippers’ frontcourt is looking mighty nice right now, after the acquisition of Danilo Gallinari, the 6-foot-10 sharpshooting swingman, in a three-team trade to pair with superstar power forward Blake Griffin (who has a fat new contract) and high-flying center DeAndre Jordan.
Adding Gallinari means the Clippers will be sending Jamal Crawford to Atlanta, although reports indicate that the three-time NBA Sixth Man of the Year is seeking a buyout from the Hawks, which would make him a free agent. Crawford’s next destination? Perhaps remaining in Los Angeles to team up with the Lakers and rookie point guard Lonzo Ball, the No. 2 overall pick in this year’s draft.
The Kings are piecing together an absolute squad
After a prolific NBA draft in which they added De’Aaron Fox, Justin Jackson, Harry Giles and Frank Mason III, the Sacramento Kings made some power moves on the veteran free-agent market.
First, they signed point guard George Hill.
Then, they added big man Zach Randolph.
Kings executive vice president Scott Perry ain’t playing no games.
Warriors add another piece in Omri casspi
If you thought the reigning NBA champion Golden State Warriors were done making free agency moves after inking Stephen Curry to a supermax deal, persuading Kevin Durant to take a pay cut, and re-signing Andre Iguodala and David West, think again.
The Warriors added an eight-year veteran forward to their championship roster in Omri Casspi, who might be the greatest teammate of all time. Just ask his former Sacramento Kings comrade DeMarcus Cousins.
Otto porter gearing up for huge payday
Whom will Otto Porter play for next season? That’s the question. After reports that the Utah Jazz, having lost Hayward, would pursue the Washington Wizards’ restricted free-agent swingman, the Brooklyn Nets pulled an okeydoke by reaching a contract agreement with Porter.
There’s a chance that Porter will remain in Washington, given the Wizards’ ability to match any contract offer extended to him. But, is Porter really worth that much money? Some don’t think so.
The Miami Heat officially part ways with Chris bosh
Seven years ago, Chris Bosh made a huge splash in free agency by leaving the Toronto Raptors to sign with the Miami Heat and form a feared “Big 3” with Dwyane Wade and LeBron James. Four years and two championships later, Bosh chose to remain in Miami by re-signing with the Heat in 2014, even after James decided to return to Cleveland to play for the Cavaliers. But now, Bosh’s time in South Beach (and perhaps his career) has officially come to an end. After Bosh battled with blood clot issues since 2015 that forced him to miss the entire 2016-17 season, the Heat formally waived the 11-time All-Star power forward, while team president Pat Riley vowed that no Heat player would ever wear Bosh’s No. 1 again.
After receiving the news, James and Wade took to Twitter to pay homage to their former teammate.
Health permitting, Bosh could suit up again for another NBA team, although this likely marks the end of an illustrious NBA career. If so, Bosh will truly be missed. Salute.