Ranking the Celtics contracts from bargain to nightmare

The Celtics will be over the second tax apron but are well-positioned moving forward.
Boston Celtics, Jayson Tatum, Kristaps Porzingis
Boston Celtics, Jayson Tatum, Kristaps Porzingis / Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
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The Boston Celtics had the best regular season record in the NBA by a wide margin, but the job is not done. Their goal is a championship and are the favorites to win it. Boston has all the pieces and just locked in Jrue Holiday long-term. The Celtics plan on being in contention for years to come with this core.

Their roster gets significantly more expensive next season as Jaylen Brown’s max extension kicks in. Boston has $192 million committed in salaries with just ten players under contract. They will be north of $200 million and over the second tax apron after rounding out their roster. Brad Stevens and the front office will attempt to improve their depth this summer, but their roster is largely set.

How does their cap sheet look? Boston will be facing the second tax apron restrictions for years to come, but they have an elite roster. Here is a ranking of their contracts from best to worst.

Absolute steals

These are contracts every team wishes they had on their books, including Boston’s superstar.

15. Jayson Tatum

Tatum is the third-highest-paid Celtic and 38th-highest-paid player in the NBA this season, despite being the best player on the best team. He finished fourth in MVP voting in 2023 and has been first-team All-NBA for two straight years. Tatum is under contract through 2025 and every team would be eager to acquire his contract.

Superstars are always undervalued. It is why the NBA created a maximum contract, but Jayson Tatum is a steal. He will get a significant raise starting in the 2025-26 season and will still be undervalued.

14. Derrick White

White has become a crucial piece for the Celtics. He was second-team All-Defense in 2023 and is an outstanding two-way option. The 6’4 guard is making just $18.3 million this season and remains under contract for $19.5 million in the 2024-25 campaign. He becomes extension-eligible this summer and will likely be searching for a significant raise.

The Celtics may not have the money to pay him. It could create a difficult decision this offseason or at next year’s trade deadline. Boston does not want to let him leave for zero return in free agency. White will be impossible to replace. Expect the Celtics to attempt to convince him to take less to stay, but it may not happen.

Not every contract on the Boston Celtics’ books is fantastic, but they have several others who remain underpaid.