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Celtics Roster Reset

Boston has two open spots they can fill on the regular season roster

Charlotte Hornets v Boston Celtics Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

The Boston Celtics play their first preseason game on Sunday, October 2 against the Charlotte Hornets. This will be our first chance to see the new-look Celtics in action.

With that in mind, here’s what Boston’s roster is currently looking like:

Fully Guaranteed Contracts (11)

· Malcolm Brogdon

· Jaylen Brown

· Danilo Gallinari (injured, expected to miss entire season)

· Blake Griffin (not officially signed yet)

· Sam Hauser

· Payton Pritchard

· Marcus Smart

· Jayson Tatum

· Derrick White

· Grant Williams

· Robert Williams (injured, expected to miss 8-12 weeks)

Analysis: No surprised are expect here. Unless Blake Griffin proves to have nothing left in the tank (unlikely), all 11 of these players will be on the regular season roster.

Note: Even though Danilo Gallinari and Robert Williams are injured, they will take up roster spots. There is no form of injured reserve list or disabled list in the NBA.

Partially Guaranteed Contracts (2)

· Al Horford

· Luke Kornet (injured, expected to miss 1-2 weeks)

Analysis: Both Al Horford and Luke Kornet might as well be considered fully guaranteed at this point. Horford is obviously going nowhere. He’s a key part of the team.

As for Kornet, he was running with the starters to open training camp. Kornet is working through a sprained ankle, but it’s not expected to be a long-term issue.

Two-Way Contracts (2)

· J.D. Davison

· Mfiondu Kabengele

Analysis: Both J.D. Davison and Mfiondu Kabengele will be on the regular season roster. Both are highly likely to start the year as Two-Way players, but don’t rule out a conversion for either guy as the season goes along.

Non-Guaranteed Training Camp Contracts (5)

· Justin Jackson

· Jake Layman

· Luka Samanic

· Brodric Thomas

· Noah Vonleh

Analysis: Boston currently has two open standard spots on the regular season roster. Teams have to carry 14 players on standard contracts, aside from two-week window increments. That means that it’s very likely one of these five players will make the regular season roster.

Carrying a 15th player on the regular season roster is very much in question. The expectation was that Boston would let that spot sit open and not add to their tax bill. However, with Danilo Gallinari, Luke Kornet and Robert Williams all sidelined (Gallinari and Williams long-term), the Celtics may bring a 15th player into the regular season.

If any of these five players make the regular season roster, their contract converts to a standard non-guaranteed deal. It would remain non-guaranteed until January 10, which is the league-wide guarantee date. Boston would be on the hook for any money earned while on the roster.

That means the Celtics could carry a 15th player for the first few weeks, or even the first two months, of the regular season and then waive them later. This is similar to the situation Jabari Parker was in last season with Boston.

The guess here is that Noah Vonleh may have a leg up on making the roster. The big man rotation is still in flux due to injuries, even after adding Blake Griffin. Vonleh being a proven NBA-level big should give him a decent chance of making the roster.

After that, it’s probably a competition between Justin Jackson, Jake Layman and Brodric Thomas. There’s a familiarity with Thomas, as he was with the team last year. He’s also more of a 2/3, where Jackson and Layman can function as 3/4 players.

Luka Samanic is probably ticketed to land with the Maine Celtics. He is far less proven than any of the other four players. But Samanic has enough talent, along with being young enough, that he’s worth continuing to work with in Maine.

It’s also possible Boston adds another veteran, similar to what they did with Griffin. There are several proven NBA-level backups still available. That’s something to keep an eye over the next couple of weeks, and even into the start of the season.

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