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Report: Celtics create massive trade exception via Hayward sign-and-trade [UPDATE]

Gordon Hayward opted out of his Celtics deal and has found a home. We break down the report of his signing with the Hornets.

Gordon Hayward #20 of the Boston Celtics handles the ball against the Miami Heat during Game Six of the Eastern Conference Finals of the NBA Playoffs on September 27, 2020 at the AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida. Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

UPDATE: Nov. 29, 3:41 p.m. — The Celtics are sending two second-round picks — one in 2023 and another in 2024 — to complete the sign-and-trade for Hayward. Charlotte is also throwing in a conditional 2022 second-rounder, per Shams Charania.

As a result of the sign-and-trade, the Celtics have made history with the largest trade exception ever, per Bobby Marks of ESPN — $27.9 million.

UPDATE: Nov. 25, 11:02 a.m. — The Celtics and Hornets are working out a sign-and-trade that would send Boston a trade exception, per Woj. The deal Hayward reportedly agreed to is the same — four years, $120 million. The Hornets are seeking a third team to try and take on Nic Batum’s massive $27 million salary instead of waiving the veteran.

Free agent forward Gordon Hayward has agreed to a four-year, $120 million deal with the Charlotte Hornets, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Saturday. Wojnarowski also adds that the Hornets signed Hayward to an offer sheet in 2014 when he was a restricted free agent, but the Utah Jazz matched their offer.

To make room for Hayward on the roster, the Hornets are going to reportedly waive Nicolas Batum and use the league’s stretch provision, per Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.

The former Boston Celtics forward opted out of the final year of his four-year, $127.8 million deal earlier this week. According to multiple reports, Hayward had received interest from the Indiana Pacers, New York Knicks, along with his former team — the Celtics. The Pacers were a preferred option for Hayward, but the only way that could happen is if Indiana completed a sign-and-trade with Boston, per Marc Stein of the New York Stein.

Last season, Hayward had one of better years in Boston, averaging 17.5 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 4.1 assists in 33.5 minutes per game. He also shot 50 percent from the field and 38.3 percent from three-point range.

The Charlotte Hornets are hoping that Hayward can bring that same type of production over with their young nucleus which now includes LaMelo Ball. However, one does wonder where Hayward fits in their starting lineup as Charlotte has Miles Bridges.