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Celtics to sign Daniel Theis, waive Tyler Zeller

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Boston Celtics have signed German forward Daniel Theis to a two-year deal. In addition, the Boston Celtics requested waivers on center Tyler Zeller, whose $8 million contract would have become guaranteed on Sunday.

Theis, 25, was draft eligible in 2013 but went undrafted. Theis went on to spend his entire career in the German League, where he has won back to back to back championships with Brose Baskets, while also being named a four-time all-star and earning defensive player of the year honors this past season.

Theis also played two seasons in the EuroLeague with Brose, including 30 games this past season, where he averaged 9.6 points and 4.6 rebounds in 19.4 minutes per game.

Zeller, 27, was a former first-round pick of the Cleveland Cavaliers (selected by Dallas and flipped on draft night) in the 2012 NBA Draft out of the University of Indiana. Zeller spent two seasons in Cleveland before a salary dump landed him in Boston (along with a first round pick that ultimately allowed the Celtics to acquire all-star point guard Isaiah Thomas).

Over the past three seasons with Boston, Zeller averaged 7.1 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 1.0 assist per game. He will now look to latch on to his third professional team, coming off a year where he only saw 10.3 minutes per game.

The flip of big men is a win/win for the Celtics, who likely shed money and bring in a better player. Theis is more versatile on offense and defense as the Celtics also brought in 2016 first rounder Ante Zizic, which would have limited Zeller’s minutes even further.