3 Former Celtics Still Unemployed After Free Agency Week 1

Many players found new homes in the first week of NBA free agency, however, these three former Boston Celtics are still standing in the unemployment line.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
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While the Boston Celtics have been one of the quieter teams this offseason, that isn't necessarily a bad thing. After all, the Celtics are the defending NBA Champions and with most of the roster already being under contract, there wasn't exactly a pressing need to add outside talent this summer.

If it isn't broken, don't fix it, right?

While all signs point to the Celtics challenging for the Larry O'Brien Trophy next season, a quiet offseason means the fanbase hasn't had much to talk about. Fortunately, there's a various ways to kill time until the 2024-25 campaign, including taking a look at what certain former Boston players are up to now that the first week of free agency is in the books.

With that in mind, here are three ex-Celtics who are still standing in the unemployment line this offseason.

1. Gordon Hayward, SF/PF

There was a ton of hype regarding Gordon Hayward when he inked a four-year, $128 million contract with the Celtics back during the 2017 offseason. The former Butler star was coming off an All-Star campaign with the Utah Jazz that saw him set career highs in points (21.9) while averaging .471/398/.844 shooting splits.

All signs pointed to something special around the corner.

Unfortunately, Hayward's first year in Boston was nothing short of a disaster. In one of the most gruesome injuries in NBA history, the Indianapolis, IN native broke his tibia and dislocated his ankle just five minutes into his Celtics debut, sidelining him for the entire 2017-18 campaign.

Hayward managed to play 125 games for the Celtics in the following two seasons, but it was clear that he was a shadow of his former self. He averaged 13.9 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 3.6 assists in those contests before being sent to the Charlotte Hornets in November 2020 as a part of a sign-and-trade deal worth $120 million. He's since played 194 games split between the Hornets and Oklahoma City Thunder, averaging 14.8 PTS/4.5 REB/3.7 AST and .468/.385/.816 splits.

Hayward likely won't sniff another NBA All-Star Game again, but that doesn't mean he's useless. The 34-year-old forward still has the tools to contribute in a supporting role, however, expectations should be tempered given that he's played 51 or fewer games in each of the last six seasons.