Report: Celtics sign D-League Rookie of the Year Abdel Nader to four-year, $6 million contract

Ethan Miller/Getty Images
6 Comments

Abdel Nader – the No. 58 pick in the 2016 NBA draft – could have forced the Celtics’ hand by signing the required tender (a one-year contract, surely unguaranteed at the minimum, teams must extend to retain a second-rounder’s draft rights) last summer. In a roster crunch, Boston would have likely waived Nader and let him hit unrestricted free agency. It’s also possible the Celtics would have found a spot for him, in which case he’d be a free agent this summer.

Instead, Nader declined the required tender and signed with the D-League to play for Boston’s affiliate, allowing the Celtics to retain his exclusive NBA rights.

He had an excellent season – Nader won D-League Rookie of the Year – and would hold interest around the NBA. But he’s still stuck negotiating with only Boston.

After doing the Celtics this tremendous favor last year, Nader is betting against himself this year and allowing Boston to reap the potential rewards.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

A four-year minimum contract would pay Nader $5,123,913. So, it seems he secured a little more than that.

In exchange, he granted Boston control of his career for the next four years at a low – probably not fully guaranteed – salary.

That might be a fine tradeoff. For all the intrigue he has generated, Nader is still a former late second-rounder who turns 24 before the season begins. There’s no guarantee he becomes an NBA contributor.

At 6-foot-6 with a 7-foot-1 wingspan, Nader is a versatile perimeter player, especially defensively. He’ll have to adjust from a major role offensive in Maine to be a role player in the NBA, but that might help his efficiency.

If Nader pans out, the Celtics will derive plenty of value from him. If not, it won’t cost them much to move on.