The Boston Celtics never wanted Gerald Wallace to begin with, and will be trying once again to offload him via trade this offseason, even willing to part with a first round pick in order to give some team the incentive to take him.
The Celtics are drowning in first round draft picks: Two in 2015, three in 2016, “just” the regular one in 2017 and two more in 2018. For a team that didn’t take long to rebuild and made the playoffs earlier than expected, getting rid of someone with a $10.1 million salary next season which will put them in an excellent situation cap-wise is worth losing a first round pick for.
Wallace, 32, seems to have aged a bit quicker than the average NBA player. Maybe it was his quick, take no prisoners style that got him so banged up, but the decline for him from the moment he left the Charlotte Hornets (Bobcats) then was very fast. He has never been able to help a team in the playoffs get very far, and there isn’t too much basketball left for him to contribute. Without anything special when it comes to outside shooting and fading physical and athletic gifts, Wallace doesn’t have much of a place in the NBA anymore.
He played in just 32 games this season, averaging 8.9 minutes a night. The Celtics used him just once, for four minutes, in the postseason, losing in four games to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Those garbage time minutes are hopefully, for the Celtics at least, the last they have to see of Wallace in Green.
Not that he’s done anything wrong. He’s a locker room leader and a positive guy, but motivational speeches in the locker room aren’t worth $10.1 million a year. No other team has an actual need for Wallace either, he’s pretty much done in the NBA. But when he comes with a first round pick? Some teams are willing to eat up that contract for one year, although who knows, maybe some sort of buyout is in the future for him as well.