Al Horford wants out. Kyrie Irving is bolting Boston, Anthony Davis isn’t coming, and while the Celtics are not back to square one, the 33-year-old Horford isn’t sticking around to see what’s next. He is opting out of his $30.5 million next season to sign a longer-term deal with a playoff bound team.
Where? Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald says he has heard two teams are in the lead for Horford’s services.
Dallas has been linked to Horford from the moment he said he would hit the market, with a lot of buzz around the league they will offer him four years, $112 million (the Mavs have pushed back on that number). Horford could show the Mavericks’ young stars — Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis — how to win. He would be a good fit on the roster (at least for the first years of the contract, that fourth year at age 37 could be dicey), and Dallas could be a threat in a West where the top is wide open.
The Clippers would only have interest if Kawhi Leonard chooses them over staying with the champs in Toronto. If Leonard comes West, and the Clippers move Danilo Gallinari (without bringing salary back), they could bring in Horford to be the glue center they need. He wouldn’t have to play too many minutes because the Clippers have Montrezl Harrell coming off the bench.
Both options make sense, plus the Lakers (potentially) and other teams are rumored to have interest. Still, the smart money seems to be on Dallas snapping Horford up.