League sources told The Tribune that Hayward and his agent, Mark Bartelstein, have agreed to help facilitate a sign-and-trade. Utah would sign Hayward to a new max deal, then send him to Boston in exchange for Crowder, who has just short of three years and $22 million remaining on his contract.
A deal would be a boost for Utah as it watches its star player exit. It would also greatly help the Jazz's salary cap situation.
Without a sign-and-trade or some contract-clearing deal, the most space the Jazz could create in the immediate future is about $11 million, after signing first-round draft picks Donovan Mitchell and Tony Bradley on Wednesday. That could only happen if Utah delays signing Joe Ingles to his new four-year, $52 million contract, leaving much lower cap hold in place for the time being. But because teams are allowed to go over the cap to sign their own players, a sign-and-trade with Boston would allow the Jazz to bring back up to about $30 million in contracts and trade exceptions.
Asked about the possibility on Wednesday night, Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey said "we would never comment on any trade speculation."
Crowder was drafted in the second round by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2012 NBA draft and then traded to the Dallas Mavericks. He was traded to the Celtics in December of 2014, and has averaged 8.9 points and 3.8 rebounds per game in his career.
Crowder's father, Corey, played for the Jazz during his NBA career. When Celtics fans chanted Hayward's name during a game in Boston this past season, Crowder was displeased, saying "I didn't like that at all. I think that was a sign of disrespect to me from the fans. That sparked a little fire in me."
Twitter: @tribjazz, @aaronfalk