Utah Jazz swingman Gordon Hayward is set to become a restricted free agent on July 1.
The Jazz would obviously like to retain him, but other teams, including the Boston Celtics, who are coached by Hayward’s college coach at Butler, Brad Stevens, will be very interested in signing Hayward.
Jabari Davis of Basketball Insiders could see Hayward joining his former coach if things don’t work out in Utah.
If they are unable to move Favors, then I could see Hayward ending up in Boston. Not only are they on the hunt for a marquee guy, but he may feel even more comfortable reuniting with his former coach in Brad Stevens. For the record, it is nothing against Favors at all. He still has a bright upside, but in today’s NBA it is tough to rebuild when you have multiple guys on max deals that are still trying to find their way and develop. There has to be a blend of established talent with developing players, and while you could technically afford to max both Favors/Hayward, you kind of have to make a choice between the two in order to maximize your assets.
I can definitely see your point on how he would fit in Phoenix, but I just don’t know if they’ll have the money to re-sign Bledsoe and pay a max contract to Hayward as well.
Hayward averaged 16.2 points, 5.2 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game for the Jazz last season. He shot 41.3% from the field and 30.4% from beyond the arc.