Celtics Sign Hometown Big Man to Contract: Report

Noah Vonleh, now of the Boston Celtics.

Getty Noah Vonleh, now of the Boston Celtics.

After making it all the way to the NBA Finals this past season, the Boston Celtics haven’t slowed down this summer. Brad Stevens got on the phones immediately, signing forward Danillo Gallinari and making a massive trade for combo guard Malcolm Brogdon.

And while the idea of a potential Kevin Durant trade looms large, they’ve still prioritized improving the roster around their core players. In addition to Gallinari and Brogdon, they also signed Summer League standouts Mfiondu Kabengele and JD Davison to two-way contracts.

However, they’re not done just yet. Since they traded five players in exchange for Brogdon, they have some open roster spots left available. After singing Sam Hauser and Luke Kornet to new contracts, Boston had at least two spots to fill, and according to a recent report, they just filled one.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported that they have signed forward Noah Vonleh to a one-year deal that will allow him to compete for a roster spot in training camp.

“Free agent F Noah Vonleh has agreed to a one-year deal with the Boston Celtics, source tells ESPN. Vonleh will go to training camp with the hopes of making the roster,” Wojnarowski tweeted on August 1.

Vonleh has bounced around throughout his NBA career and will head to Boston in the hopes of finding a home.

Career Stats for Vonleh

The 6’10 forward/center came into the league with high hopes. He was selected with the ninth-overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft by the Charlotte Hornets. However, he only spent one year in Charlotte before his career as a journeyman began.

In seven NBA seasons from 2014 to 2021, Vonleh made appearances with seven different franchises. After being traded by the Hornets after his rookie season, he spent three years with the Portland Trail Blazers. While he played in 185 games with Portland, he never played in more than 68 with any other team he suited up for.

For a top-10 pick, Vonleh’s career stats leave something to be desired. In his 339 NBA games, he’s averaged 4.9 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 0.8 assists on 45.9% shooting from the field and 30.8% shooting from behind the three-point line (on 0.9 three-point attempts per game).

That being said, Vonleh is a hometown talent, as he was born in Salem, Massachusetts, and grew up in Haverhill. He attended high school in New Hampshire, and when he was being worked out ahead of the draft, there was some serious buzz that he could end up in Boston.

Vonleh Connected to Celtics Ahead of Draft

Before the draft, Vonleh got the chance to work out with the Celtics. He said that he was excited to get that opportunity with his hometown team.

“All the workouts were pretty good, but this one just had a little bit more meaning to it because it’s my hometown… Not everybody gets a chance to work out for their hometown team. This is a great opportunity,” Vonleh said, as noted in an article by Chris Forsberg.

Boston held the sixth pick in that year’s draft and chose to select Marcus Smart, which ended up being the correct decision.

But now, seven years later, Vonleh has another shot to play for the team he grew up watching.

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