BOSTON (AP) — The Celtics have cut ties with forward David Lee.
Boston president of basketball operations Danny Ainge announced the team waived Lee on Friday. It comes a day after Ainge hinted at a buyout of the $15.4 million left on the 32-year-old’s expiring contract.
It ends Lee’s brief tenure in Boston that began after he came over in a trade with Golden State in July.
Lee (Chaminade HS, St. Louis) started the season at power forward, but saw his playing time diminish over the first half of the year as Boston coach Brad Stevens opted to play smaller.
Lee’s last appearance was Jan. 10. He didn’t appear in Boston’s final 18 games before the All-Star break.
In all Lee appeared in 30 games for the Celtics this season, with four starts.
He is averaging career-low 7.3 points and 4.3 rebounds.
“We thank David for his contributions to our organization and wish him nothing but the best in the future,” Ainge said in a statement.
Lee sat out each of Boston’s last two practices in advance of Friday night’s matchup at Utah.
But as Lee’s representatives and Celtics officials discussed provisions of a buyout, he told reporters Thursday that he was already mentally preparing for the end of his Celtics tenure and for the next step in his NBA career.
“Everything doesn’t always work out the way you want it to,” Lee said. “Just disappointing for the fact that I wanted to come here and make a major impact, and that didn’t happen for one reason or another.
“The last two places I’ve been before I’ve been able to make that impact. It is what it is. Once again, this is a business for both sides of this, and I know they don’t have any bad feeling toward me, and vice versa,” he said.
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