Reports: Jae Crowder returning to Celtics for five years, $35 million

Jae Crowder guards LeBron James in the playoffs last season.
Jae Crowder guards LeBron James in the playoffs last season. –The Boston Globe

Jae Crowder and the Celtics have a good thing going, and the restricted free agent small forward has reportedly agreed to a five-year contract to stay in Boston.

Shams Charania of RealGM was first to report the news, which was later confirmed by Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe. Crowder is set to make $35 million over the life of the contract.

Crowder averaged 9.5 points and 4.6 rebounds per game after the Celtics traded for him last December. His defense and ability to play the power forward spot in small lineups made Crowder a key piece in Brad Stevens’ rotation last season.

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A bit of an afterthought in the Rajon Rondo trade, Crowder quickly emerged as the best asset exchanged between the Celtics and the Dallas Mavericks (Boston also acquired Brandan Wright, Jameer Nelson, and a first-round pick that is top-7 protected until 2019). Dallas expressed some remorse for trading Crowder, reportedly trying to sign him back before the Celtics closed the deal.

Crowder’s deal cannot be signed official until July 8th, per NBA rules.

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