NBA Roundtable

Richard Jefferson Opts Out

In Free Agency on June 30, 2010 at 7:21 pm

RealGM reports

Richard Jefferson has opted out of the final season of his contract.

Jefferson would have earned $15.2M in the final year of his contract.

Jefferson

This is a very poor decision by Richard Jefferson.

After a poor showing last season and given his age, RJ is likely to only receive an MLE level contract this summer. An offer that he could have just as easily gotten in 12 months.

I have to wonder who is giving Richard Jefferson advice behind the scenes because this decisions is overwhelmingly unlikely to play out in his favour.

San Antonio

Is this good news for the San Antonio Spurs?

On one hand, the Spurs just got rid of a very bad contract and gained a considerable amount of cap flexibility. This will save them money both on the contract and in luxury tax payments. It will also allow San Antonio to be more aggressive in using their MLE this summer to acquire another player.

On the other hand, San Antonio just lost one of their best trade assets (RJ’s expiring contract). The loss will limit the Spurs options considerably in the trade market. Thus, it is now very unlikely that the Spurs will be able to bring in another star quality player.

Furthermore, the Spurs just lost a good role player in Jefferson. Their only real small forward on the roster.

I’m thinking San Antonio would have been better off taking the financial hit and hanging onto Richard Jefferson.

Update

Yahoo Sports reports

Jefferson eyes Knicks, Nets

Richard Jefferson doesn’t have a deal with the San Antonio Spurs and would prefer to return to the New York area to play for the Knicks or Nets, league sources told Y! Sports.

Jefferson is seeking a multiyear contract that averages in the range of $8 million-$10 million, sources said. He opted out of the $15 million final season of his contract with the Spurs on Tuesday.

Jefferson has built a good relationship with Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, but doesn’t think the team’s system best fits his skills.

An $8-10 million per annum contract would be a very bad deal if anyone offers Jefferson that type of money.

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