The Boston Celtics are pursuing an aggressive summer plan of sequencing the signing of free agent Gordon Hayward and relinquishing the assets needed to complete a trade for Paul George, league sources told The Vertical. For salary-cap purposes, Boston wants a Hayward commitment before it can finalize a trade for George and secure the most dynamic free-agent coup in franchise history, league sources said.
The Celtics have a growing confidence they could sign George to a contract extension, and keep him from leaving to his predetermined free-agent destination of the Los Angeles Lakers, league sources told The Vertical. Boston’s belief that it can make George more than a one-year rental is fueling the franchise’s willingness to part with a significant package of assets, league sources said.