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Reports: Former Celtics forward Jared Sullinger agrees to 1-year deal with Raptors 07.11.16 at 3:30 pm ET
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Once the Celtics signed big man Al Horford, they no longer had room for restricted free agent Jared Sullinger, so they renounced his qualifying offer. He didn’t stay unemployed for long.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo’s The Vertical, Sullinger has agreed to a one-year, $6 million deal with the Raptors, which he trumpeted on his Twitter account by changing his logo to that of the Raptors. Sullinger thanked Celtics fans.

Sullinger averaged 11.1 points and 7.7 rebounds a game over four years with the Celtics after being selected 21st overall in the 2012 draft. Head coach Brad Stevens told the Boston Globe after the C’s set Sullinger free that he’d land on his feet.

“Jared’s one of the more talented guys being able to get the ball off the glass, and he’s got beautiful touch and he’s a good guy,” Stevens said. “And so I think he’ll do well.”

Read More: Celtics, Jared Sullinger, NBA Free agency, Raptors
Report: Kevin Durant eliminates Clippers from consideration in free agency 07.03.16 at 10:18 am ET
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And then there were five.

Free agent forward Kevin Durant, the best player on the market by a country mile, has informed the Los Angeles Clippers he won’t be signing with them, per Ben Bolch of the LA Times:

That leaves the Celtics as one of five finalists for Durant’s services, and perhaps the greatest threat to entice him to leave Oklahoma City, though the Thunder remain overwhelming favorites to retain him.

The Celtics pulled out all the stops in the Hamptons to wow Durant during their visit, flying in Tom Brady of the Patriots to help with their pitch. Red Sox slugger David Ortiz also tweeted his support.

The team’s best move in the negotiation, however, came right after their visit finished, when free agent Al Horford, a close friend of Durant, agreed to a four-year, $113 million contract.

With the Clippers out of consideration, Durant’s choice has been narrowed to the Thunder, Celtics, Warriors, Spurs, and Heat.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Danny Ainge, Kevin Durant rumors, NBA Free agency
Celtics agree with former Hawks big man Al Horford on 4-year, $113 million deal, land marquee free agent 07.02.16 at 7:24 pm ET
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Al Horford is coming to the Celtics, and he wants everyone to know it.

The free agent big man agreed to a four-year, $113 million contract on Saturday night and immediately took to his official Twitter account to celebrate.

Eagle-eyed Celtics fans will notice exactly 18 shamrocks in that tweet. That’s the number the C’s will have if they win another one.

Horford, 30, averaged 15.7 points and 7.3 rebounds last year. He helped lead the Hawks past the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs in six games before being swept out of the playoffs by the Cavaliers.

The four-time All-Star gives the Celtics something they’ve lacked during the Brad Stevens era — a mobile big man who can defend the rim as well as the pick and roll, while also scoring inside, from medium range, and even from 3-point land.

He’s considered a winning player who does all the little things, from passing out of double teams to setting solid screens. He helped lead the Hawks to the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference in 2014-15 and a trip to the conference finals, where they fell to the Cavaliers.

Horford’s arrival gives the Celtics a fighting chance on another front, as well. They met with free agent Kevin Durant on Saturday night in the Hamptons, and the two players are good friends. While the Celtics remain a long shot to sign Durant, Horford certainly helps their cause.

Read More: Al Horford, Al Horford signs with Celtics, Boston Celtics, Celtics
Red Sox star David Ortiz tweets support of Boston and Celtics at Kevin Durant at 7:15 pm ET
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Tom Brady isn’t the only superstar athlete hoping to lure Kevin Durant to Boston. David Ortiz got in on the fun on Saturday, too.

Brady reportedly attended the meeting with Durant and his representatives in the Hamptons on Saturday. Ortiz obviously had other commitments, with the Red Sox hosting the Angels, so he tweeted his support instead.

According to the Boston Globe, the Celtics’ meeting with Durant had ended by 7 p.m.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Celtics, Celtics free agency, Celtics rumors
Report: Hawks appear to be overtaking Celtics in Al Horford sweepstakes at 7:10 pm ET
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Not so fast on Al Horford, Celtics fans.

Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski hears the Hawks believe they’ll be able to retain the free agent big man, who already has a max offer from the Celtics.

The problem is the most the Celtics can offer Horford is four years and $113 million, whereas the Hawks can extend to a fifth year and $153 million. To fit Horford on their roster, the Hawks would likely need to deal fellow big man Paul Millsap, and Wojnarowski reports the All-Star forward has drawn considerable interest.

If the Celtics lose out on Horford, they’ll have limited options in free agency … barring a miracle signing of Thunder All-Star Kevin Durant.

Read More: Al Horford, Boston Celtics, Celtics, Celtics rumors
Celtics reportedly plan to offer Al Horford a max contract, hope to bring him to Kevin Durant meeting 07.01.16 at 10:33 pm ET
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Al Horford

Al Horford

With free agents vanishing from the radar screen at a steady clip, the Celtics appear poised to make an aggressive run at one of the premier names on the market — Hawks center Al Horford.

According to Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald, the Celtics plan to offer Horford a max contract on Friday night. The four-year, $113 million deal would give the Celtics one of the best defensive big men in the game, while also positioning them to make a run at Horford’s good friend, free agent prize Kevin Durant, either this offseason or next.

Horford is considered a winning player whose contributions exceed what appears on a standard stat sheet. He averaged 15.2 points and 7.3 rebounds last year while leading the Hawks to the second round of the playoffs, where they were swept by LeBron James and the eventual champion Cavaliers. Before that, he helped the Hawks oust the Celtics in six games from the first round.

Horford, who just turned 30, is a four-time All-Star. The Hawks selected him third overall in the 2007 draft. According to the Herald, the Celtics want Horford whether or not they can sign Durant, and with Dwight Howard inking a three-year deal in Atlanta, Horford should end up with a new home next season.

It appears the Celtics are intent on making that home Boston.

UPDATE: And just to make things more interesting, now there’s this news . . .

Read More: Al Horford, Boston Celtics, Celtics, Celtics rumors
Report: Dwight Howard agrees with Hawks for 3 years, $70 million without meeting Celtics at 7:12 pm ET
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Dwight Howard

Dwight Howard

This will probably come as a relief to plenty of Celtics fans, but Yahoo is reporting that Dwight Howard has agreed to a three-year, $70 million contract with his hometown Hawks.

Howard had been expected to meet with the Celtics in the coming days, but he canceled all of his remaining visits after striking a deal with the Hawks.

Howard, 30, was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2004 draft out of Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy by the Magic. He has averaged 17.8 points and 12.7 rebounds for his career, and has also played with the Lakers and Rockets.

He reached the Finals in 2009 by knocking out the defending champion Celtics in the second round after the C’s had taken a 3-2 series lead. He averaged 16.4 points and 17.1 rebounds in that series before losing in the Finals to the Lakers.

Howard had been linked to the Celtics this offseason, but his back-to-the-basket game didn’t necessarily fit Brad Stevens’ system. The C’s are expected to make a hard push for Hawks big man Al Horford, who becomes expendable with Howard now in the fold.

Read More: Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Celtics, Celtics rumors
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