Danilo Gallinari exercises option to stay with Celtics next season
As the Boston Celtics head into free agency, veteran forward Danilo Gallinari has already decided on his fate for next season.
Gallinari reportedly chose to opt into his $6.8 million player option for the 2023-24 campaign. The decision doesn’t come as much of a surprise, given that he missed all of this past season due to a torn ACL.
Gallinari is returning from the second tear of the ACL in his left knee, which likely extended the recovery process. The decision to return will give him extended time to get his body right ahead of next season.
He could serve as a key offensive piece off the bench behind his scoring and 3-point shooting. The question that remains is what kind of player he will be once he returns from a significant injury.
Gallinari isn’t the player he once was, but he can remain a highly effective offensive factor. In the 2021-22 season with the Atlanta Hawks, he averaged 11.7 points and 4.7 rebounds on 43.4 percent shooting from the floor and 38.1 percent from beyond the arc in 25.3 minutes per contest.
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The Celtics will likely elect to bring him back, given his salary. If he can return to form, he can become a key contributor in a sizable role for Boston’s bench.
The question becomes when will he return to the court. He has a few months before the Celtics begin training camp in September. Boston will monitor the situation closely in hopes Gallinari could be part of what lifts them toward NBA title contention.