The Boston Celtics won't be able to make any in-person free-agent pitches to Davis Bertans.
The Washington Wizards forward has decided not to participate in the NBA's 22-team season restart in Orlando later this summer, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Tim Bontemps reported Monday.
Bertans isn't injured, per Wojnarowski, and is sitting out due to "preventative" measures as he prepares to enter unrestricted free agency this offseason.
Sitting out is preventive measure, which Wizards fully support. Franchise is treating Bertans as a top offseason priority in free agency. Bertans -- 16 PPG, 42 percent on 3's -- still expected to participate in pre-Orlando training with team. https://t.co/vjIrWXu8wk— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 22, 2020
This decision makes sense for Bertans. The 27-year-old is expected to land a lucrative free-agent contract after a career season for Washington -- 15.4 points per game; 3.7 made 3-pointers per game -- but could lose out on such a deal if he suffers an injury in the NBA bubble.
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He's won't exactly miss much, either: Wizards are 5.5 games back of the Orlando Magic for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference and likely will only play eight "seeding" games before being eliminated.
Bertans' absence will make Washington an easier matchup for Boston in the "seeding" round as the Celtics jockey for playoff position in the East.
As for Bertans' future? The C's reportedly made "several strong offers" for the Latvia native at this year's trade deadline and could try to pursue him in free agency. As Wojnarowski noted, however, the Wizards are making Bertans a "top priority" this offseason, and the fact that they support him sitting out certainly signals that.