Celtics Offseason

What to make of Celtics reportedly attending John Wall's workout

The five-time All-Star has played just 74 games over the last four seasons.

NBC Universal, Inc.

How will the Boston Celtics replace Marcus Smart? Apparently they're considering a wide range of options.

The Celtics were one of at least two teams that attended the private workout of free-agent guard John Wall on Sunday, The Athletic's Kelly Iko reported.

The No. 1 overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft and a five-time All-Star, Wall is an elite scorer and dynamic playmaker when healthy. He hasn't been healthy for a long time, however: The 32-year-old missed the entire 2019-20 and 2021-22 campaigns and has played just 74 games over the past four seasons. He appeared in 34 games for the Los Angeles Clippers last season almost primarily as a backup, averaging 11.4 points and 5.2 assists over 22.2 minutes per contest.

So, why would the Celtics have interest in a player on the wrong side of 30 with a significant injury history?

For starters, Boston could use more point guard depth after trading Smart in late June. Derrick White is the projected starter with Malcolm Brogdon and Payton Pritchard as backups, but it's still possible the team moves on from Brogdon either this offseason or ahead of the NBA trade deadline.

Regardless of whether Brogdon stays or goes, the C's would benefit from a playmaker like Wall who can attack the paint and create space for their shooters. Wall averaged 8.5 assists per 36 minutes in Los Angeles, so he's still a very capable facilitator when healthy and could help diversify the Celtics' offense after it relied heavily on the 3-point shot last season.

Wall's biggest draw might be his price tag, however. He played on a $6.5 million contract last season after earning $44 million the year prior and could be willing to sign for a team-friendly contract that would keep the Celtics under the second apron of the salary tax. (They currently have about $7 million to spend before reaching that threshold.)

It's still unclear how much interest Boston has in Wall, but there's no harm in exploring whether he'd be a good low-risk, high-reward pickup.

Contact Us