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Al Horford free agency update: Celtics big man to opt out of contract, both sides hopeful to work out new deal, per report

Boston Celtics center Al Horford is looking for a new deal. 

According to a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Horford will not exercise his $30.1 million player option for the 2019-20 NBA season in favor of unrestricted free agency. However, just because he’s opting out doesn’t mean that he wants to leave Boston, as he and the Celtics are both interested in coming to an agreement on a new deal. 

Horford averaged 13.6 points, 6.7 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.3 blocks in 29 minutes per game last season for the Celtics. 

Not only does Horford, 33, not necessarily want to leave Boston, but he would even potentially be willing to take a pay cut in order to stay there, according to a previous report from Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald

Following the Celtics’ unceremonious exit from the semifinals at the hands of the Milwaukee Bucks, Horford said that he has enjoyed his time in Boston, but hasn’t had much of an opportunity to think about his future past that. 

“It’s something that I haven’t even stopped to think about,” Horford said of his future, via Mass Live. “I’ve enjoyed being here in Boston. Just have to wait and see what we’re going to do as a team. And it’s steps that the management is going to do moving forward, and continue to get better.”

Considering the lofty expectations facing the team when the season started, Horford was understandably disappointed with how the Celtics’ 2018-19 campaign turned out. 

“We all expected more from each other and from this group. I do believe that we gave all we had. Things just didn’t go our way,” Horford said. “We had an up-and-down season all year and, in the playoffs, we got off to a good start, and then for whatever reason we weren’t able to recover. Obviously that’s disappointing and it hurts because we were trying to do it for Boston, for our fans, and obviously we’re disappointed. We came up way short.”

Horford may want to remain with the Celtics, but the organization has a lot of things to iron out over the offseason following an extremely disappointing season. Horford is just one of the pieces to what has suddenly become an extremely complicated puzzle in Boston. 

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