Bleacher Report's Dan Favale is in disbelief that Hornets general manager Mitch Kupchak is resisting trade overtures on the Boston Celtics' 2017 max signing, Gordon Hayward, given Charlotte's unlikelihood to compete in the postseason with their roster as is.
"Numerous 'playoff-caliber teams have called' the Charlotte Hornets about acquiring Gordon Hayward, according to (HoopsHype's Michael Scotto)," Favale prefaced before saying, "But as of Nov. 29, general manager Mitch Kupchak is apparently more 'focused on getting healthy and competing for a playoff spot.'
Literally, actually, WTF.
"This team's season is already cooked. That is not hyperbole. Just take a gander at the Eastern Conference teams sitting in front of the Hornets. None of them are due for significant pull-back. Charlotte's ceiling is 12th place. And that's assuming the Chicago Bulls don't go full Chicago Bulls and angle for a win-now move that ups their own conference ceiling to, like, 11th place."
Gordon Hayward a best-case scenario buyout market target for the Boston Celtics
Though the first go-round for both parties didn't deliver on the expectations many had, a reunion with Hayward after a possible buyout -- should Kupchak not find the right deal for Hayward and should the forward himself want to play for a contender before hitting free agency next June -- can never truly be written off for the Celtics for several reasons.
For one, there's the Brad Stevens pull. While Stevens didn't start Hayward upon his return from a season-ending injury during his very first game, and would later bring him off the bench in his final season during the playoff bubble, the two will always have their 2010 run to the national title game at Butler.
The second reason? Well, Hayward would be the perfect addition and could likely play over 30 minutes per game for the current team alongside players (Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum) he helped bring along in their early years.
It's not the likeliest scenario, but Hayward to the Celtics is a best-case one in every sense.