The Utah Jazz are set to match the four-year, $63 million offer sheet the Charlotte Hornets extended to shooting guard Gordon Hayward, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. Utah drafted Hayward with the No. 9 pick in 2010 and was not ready to lose the 24-year-old just yet.
Hayward averaged 16.2 points, 5.2 assists and 5.1 rebounds in his fourth year in Utah last season. He reportedly turned down a four-year, $40 million extension a year ago, and the bet paid off. He'll be paired with returning veterans Trey Burke, Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter and Alec Burks to give Utah a promising young nucleus that hasn't started winning together just yet. The Jazz also added Dante Exum and Rodney Hood in the draft.
Charlotte had hoped to reunited Hayward with his former Utah teammate Al Jefferson. The Hornets would have been a nice fit for Hayward next to Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Kemba Walker, but Utah decided it couldn't lose him for nothing.
Hayward's shooting percentages slipped last season as he took on a featured role in the offense following the departure of Jefferson. After shooting 41.5 percent from three-point range in his third season, Hayward's three-point percentage fell to 30.4 percent last year. His field goal percentage also dropped from 43.5 percent to 41.3 percent. Despite some troubles shooting the ball, Hayward did post career-highs in assists, rebounds and steals.