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BOSTON (CBS) – The Fab Melo Era in Boston is over before it ever really began.
The Celtics and Grizzlies agreed to a swap of former Syracuse players, with the C’s sending center Melo to Memphis for forward Donte Greene.
What makes Greene so appealing to Boston is his non-guaranteed contract. He is set to make $1 million this season, but can be waived any time. Shedding his contract would put the Celtics below the NBA’s luxury tax line.
With Melo, the Celtics had 15 guaranteed contracts for approximately $72.5 million — just under $1 million over the cap.
The Celtics drafted Melo with the 22nd overall pick last summer, their second first-rounder of the 2012 NBA Draft. He played most of his rookie campaign in the Developmental League, putting up some big numbers for one stretch but was eventually slowed by a concussion after walking into a doorway.
Melo was out-performed at the Orlando Summer League this summer by 2013 draft picks Kelly Olynky and Colton Iverson, and averaged just 6.2 points and 3.4 rebounds in 18.2 minutes per game.