Former first-round pick Shane Larkin signing with Celtics, report says

The Celtics’ roster continues to evolve.
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Boston reportedly is making moves to sign Shane Larkin, reported Thursday.
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The free agent point guard spent last season in Spain playing for Saski Baskonia, where he averaged 13.8 points, 5.4 assists and 2.9 rebounds per game.

By trying to compete for a spot on Boston’s starting lineup, Larkin bypassed a $6.3 million contract with Saski Baskonia.

A first-round pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, Larkin played one season for the Mavericks, one with the Knicks and one with the Nets before going overseas.

The Celtics on Friday made their four-year, $128 million signing of Gordon Hayward official after juggling their roster to fit him under the salary cap.

Only Isaiah Thomas, Al Horford, Jae Crowder, Marcus Smart, and Jaylen Brown were on the team last season.

Hart pulled out after a brief dalliance with the draft last year, and he has come back with a terrific senior season, averaging 18.9 points, 6.5 rebounds and 3.1 assists and re-establishing his 3-point shot (40.7 percent) along the way. But you’re not going to find many scouts willing to put him in the first round, and that’s puzzling to fans who have watched him carry the nation’s top team over the last two seasons.

Hart is a 22-year-old senior, which dents his stock, and though he has improved in many areas this year (strength, playmaking, shooting) he is not great at any one thing. He’s 6-5 with a big wing span (6-8), but isn’t a top-shelf defender and isn’t considered a future 3-and-D wing. The guy finds ways to help his team win, though, and if Villanova can take another extended tournament run, Hart might just show enough of his improved game to persuade a team with a low first-rounder to grab him.

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