It was always a long shot Grant Williams would be wearing Celtics green next season, primarily for financial reasons. The Celtics are about to get very expensive — especially with Jaylen Brown soon to be handed a super-max contract extension — and adding Williams deserved bump up from the $4.3 million he made last season would be too much.
Then came the trade for Kristpas Porzingis , adding a $36 million salary to the mix plus filling Williams’ spot in the front court rotation, and the writing appears on the wall. For Williams’ part, he would absolutely come back if asked, but he understands the salary cap side of the business.
“Brad and those guys, if they decided to keep me and bring me back, of course, I’m gonna come back and be excited and happy ready to play for the Celtics,” Williams said Tuesday to reporters at a Fanatics fan event at Gillette Stadium (hat tip NBC Sports Boston ). “If something else happens, I’ll have to transition. But for me, my outlook has always been that I want to make sure wherever I am to impact the success of winning and make sure that I’m just there for my players that are around me and focus on the team first.”
That team will not be Boston, and it will also not be Utah now. The Jazz had been a rumored landing spot for Williams, but with their trade for John Collins, they are also off the table. There is plenty of interest around the league in Williams, with some buzz about Indiana, Milwaukee, Dallas and others.
Williams is a restricted free agent, likely leading to a sign-and-trade between Boston and whatever team makes him the best offer. Williams reportedly rejected an extension offer from the Celtics at around $12 million a year before last season, he will be hoping for more despite being in and out of Joe Mazzulla’s not-always-clear rotations last season.
Williams said he would be ready to go despite undergoing surgery on his hand just after Miami eliminated Boston.
“Physically feeling really, really good,” Williams said. “Had the surgery on the hand after the season, [he originally injured] it in March and played through it the whole season. Think re-did it or did something more — I don’t know what I did — in Game 6. And then I was like, ‘Yeah, we got to make sure we get this imaged after the season.’ They recommend surgery, it’s my first surgery in my life, so I was very, very anxious and weird. But it’s been an easy recovery and now I’ll be back way before training camp, like it never even happened.”
That’s good news for whatever team ends up signing Williams. It just won’t be Boston.
Source: Yahoo Sports