Boston Celtics have talked with Danilo Gallinari, no meeting set

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 10: Danilo Gallinari
DENVER, CO - JANUARY 10: Danilo Gallinari /

The Boston Celtics could land a smaller fish in NBA Free Agency if they can’t sign Gordon Hayward. Danilo Gallinari could be the first piece of the puzzle.

Multiple reports have indicated that Danilo Gallinari could be a potential backup plan for the Boston Celtics if they are unable to land Gordon Hayward, but the Boston Herald‘s Mark Murphy has said no meeting is scheduled.

Boston, of course, would prefer to sign Hayward, but a deal for Gallinari would still be a step in the right direction if they can pair it with a trade.

ESPN‘s Adrian Wojnarowski has reported that Gallinari would likely demand around $20 million from Boston, which is a fair asking price for the forward.

Gallinari has the skills to play either the 3 or 4 for the Celtics, so if this is the course that plays out, I’d still look for them to add a center and to trade Jae Crowder. Acquiring a new center would allow the forward positions to be filled by Gallinari and Al Horford.

Last season, Gallinari averaged 18.2 points and 5.2 rebounds per game with the Denver Nuggets. He also shot 39% from behind the arc so he would allow the Celtics to play small and space the floor even more.

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The biggest concern with Danilo is his injury-filled past. Gallinari has played in just 59, 53 and 63 games over the past three seasons.

Boston has already missed out on Jimmy Butler, Paul George, and Blake Griffin, so if they whiff on Gordon Hayward it’s fair to assume fans will begin to panic. They shouldn’t. I believe Danny Ainge still has the Boston Celtics trending upward, though the team may take a different path to the top than most anticipated.

The Celtics young players are all still here, and that bodes well for the future. Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum will one day be a strong duo on the court together in the starting lineup, and Terry Rozier may be there one day too.

Boston should not overreact and overpay any free agent this offseason if they can’t sign Hayward, just keep chugging along.

Next: Celtics will keep meeting with Hayward small

Again, there is still a chance that the Celtics do sign Hayward, as they have their meeting scheduled with him on Sunday before he flies back to Utah. Celtics fans simply need to remain patient, because you never know what could happen.