32-year-old Gordon Hayward could be on the move again for the third time in his career. After two seasons with the Hornets, his availability this summer has become a big story.
Still, not all executives are sold that he's worth trading for. In a recent article, Michael Scotto delivered some details on his value around the league and explained the thinking behind what he can bring to an NBA roster at this point of his career.
With Miles Bridges projected to earn close to, if not, a max contract, Gordon Hayward is a name to keep an eye on regarding the trade market. In talking to several executives, Hayward is viewed as a neutral asset who’s a good player, but one who’s been injury-prone the past three seasons.
I thought one executive I spoke to summed it up nicely. The executive said, “I’m sure they can trade him. I don’t think they’ll get off a ton of money. They’ll take players back that cost a little less. They overpaid to get Hayward, which they had to do to get him in the first place, but they’re also paying Nicolas Batum’s dead money to sign him. His effective cost is $40 million because of that. I don’t think he has plus value on that deal and his injuries are starting to add up with age. Maybe you’re able to trade him for two pieces making $10-15 million a year. I’m sure there will be a market for him because at the end of the day, he’s a really good wing player.”
Hayward, a 1x All-Star, averaged 15.9 points and 4.6 rebounds per game for the Hornets this season. He's been a quality wing scorer for them and can provide a spark for any other team willing to take a chance on him.
But with a history of injuries and a summer of uncertainty ahead, nobody knows what the future has in store for the Indianapolis native.
With the right team, in the right situation, he can make a real difference.