Okay, so today we were supposed to hear the long awaited outcome of the whole NBA Free Agency situation surrounding Utah Jazz team captain Gordon Hayward. And, for a good hour or so it seemed like we had things figured out. He was going to the
Utah Jazz Miami Heat Boston Celtics. Actually, we don’t know where he is going to go. And that is the frustrating and confusing part of this whole debacle.
It appears as though someone in his camp, or the Celtics camp, or with Priority Sports (his reps) leaked some information to ESPN’s Chris Haynes:
Free-agent Gordon Hayward plans to sign with the Boston Celtics, league sources tell ESPN.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) July 4, 2017
However, things went haywire shortly after. I know that I went nuts, but there was some level of PR spin and retraction. The ESPN leak was refuted.
Source confirms Gordon Hayward has NOT made a decision. The report saying he is headed to #celtics -- at least as of right now -- is UNTRUE.— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) July 4, 2017
The Utah Jazz are still waiting to be told of Gordon Hayward's intentions, league source tells ESPN. Hayward hasn't told them his plans yet.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 4, 2017
Gordon Hayward's agent, Mark Bartelstein, tells ESPN: "Gordon hasn't made a decision yet. We are still working through it."— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 4, 2017
Okay. Strap in. Told by a source w/knowledge of the process that Gordon Hayward has NOT made a decision yet & is still in the process. FWIW.— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) July 4, 2017
Which is, um, crazy? Not as crazy as this, though:
Hayward's agent Mark Bartelstein on whether final word is coming today: "That was the goal, but now we've got to kind of regroup here a bit"— Adam Himmelsbach (@AdamHimmelsbach) July 4, 2017
So, they aren’t going to announce it today? At all? Our own Shums had this to add:
I work in PR, this is a PR-ass response, this is what PR says when they suddenly realize how bad the optics are https://t.co/pwDmT9OPg2— Layton Shumway (@theshums) July 4, 2017
Steve Starks of the Jazz added this:
We trust Gordon and his agent that no decision has been made. Good communication all day and a great relationship.— Steve Starks (@StevenStarks) July 4, 2017
Of course, this all goes back to Haynes:
Maybe just reading into it too much, but Im confused as to why an off-base report would force Hayward to regroup or re-evaluate anything.— Chris Herring (@Herring_NBA) July 4, 2017
The way he keeps wording it makes it sound like the reports were accurate, but came out earlier than they would've liked.— Chris Herring (@Herring_NBA) July 4, 2017
Why would you change your thinking on a life choice bc of what a reporter put out there, accurate or not?— Chris Herring (@Herring_NBA) July 4, 2017
So what do we know? Officially he has not yet made an announcement; however, everyone kinda knows what is going to happen. He’s going to Boston. It looks bad the way the news came out, maybe it came out before it should have (hence a leak). And it’s going to still be resolved in the original way. Or at least that’s the interpretation of events from this guy.
I’m still pretty steamed by what has happened. But this is the way things go when you don’t hold an hour-long “Decision” where all the ad revenue is given to a local kids charity.
The Utah Jazz will prevail regardless of what happens with Gordon Hayward today or tomorrow. But for now this is the time-line of how the news has broken out - from the leak to the PR spin.
It’s been an upsetting day so far. But maybe Boris Diaw has the only sane attitude for today:
Happy 4th of July to all my USA friends and fans. Have a great day!— Boris Diaw (@theborisdiaw) July 4, 2017