According to Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald, Avery Bradley will be back in a Celtics uniform.
Celtics have agreed to terms with restricted free agent Avery Bradley, according to source.
— Steve Bulpett (@SteveBHoop) July 2, 2014
Bradley is currently a restricted free agent. Find out more information about him in our Free Agent Profile.
One of Danny Ainge’s major goals this offseason was to get the Texas product back in Boston. When the Boston Celtics elected to take Marcus Smart at No. 6 in the 2014 draft, some thought Bradley may be surplus to requirements with Smart’s ability to play the two and his fantastic defensive ability. However, it appears the Celtics are particularly high on Bradley, and they value him as an elite perimeter defender. Many fans remember the 2011 playoff series against the Miami Heat where Bradley really broke out by playing fantastic defense on Dwayne Wade.
Baxter Holmes of the Boston Herald reported that Bradley has signed a 4-year deal worth $32 million.
Can confirm that the #Celtics & RFA Avery Bradley have agreed to a deal. Terms: 4-year-deal worth $32 million.
— Baxter Holmes (@BaxterHolmes) July 2, 2014
So how does this rate in terms of value? Well we spoke to Reds Army’s site manager John Karalis back in late May in Ep 31 of The Lottery Mafia Podcast. At the time, Karalis suggested to us that he thought a fair deal would be a 3-year deal worth $18 million. Many other well-respected journalists also felt Bradley’s price was a little steep:
That's a bigger # than I expected for Avery Bradley. Still digesting this market, but it's going to be unpredictable.
— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) July 2, 2014
It just seems weird. We usually see RFA’s dangle on the market a bit, especially a market with so much confusion early on.
— Zach Harper (@talkhoops) July 2, 2014
So why did the Celtics overpay? Just yesterday, the Detroit Pistons signed Jodie Meeks to a 3-year deal worth $19 million. Could it be possible that the Celtics saw the market price for shooting guards and felt they had to make a strong, early move? Possible, but unlikely. I think the biggest factor for Boston overpaying was the number of high profile playoff teams who are in desperate need of a “3 and D” guy. If you look at the graph below, you can see there would be a lot of potential suitors for someone with Bradley’s skill set.
So have the Celtics overpaid for Bradley? Yes, but when you have invested a large amount of time developing a player like the Celtics have, you can understand why they might believe he is worth the money. Right now, he may not warrant $8 million per year, but what the Celtics will be banking on is if he can keep making strides and improving as a player. In the 2013-14 season, Bradley put up career-highs of 14.9 PPG, 3.8 RPG and stayed healthy for a career-best 60 games. The Celtics will know best if he has the potential to eventually be worth that kind of money. Ainge has been hugely successful during his time in Boston, so don’t chalk this up to Bradley being largely overpaid just yet.