Controversy is brewing over the free-agent summer transfer that has taken Nigerian-born star, Andre Iguodala from Golden State Warriors to their National Basketball Association (NBA) rivals, Memphis Grizzlies.
Iguodala made the switch in unexpected style, as he had earlier turned down an offer from Los Angeles Lakers, such that many Golden State fans are raising eyebrows over the ability of Memphis to grab him.
All fingers were initially pointing in the direction of LA for Iguodala, as his former agent, Rob Pelinka, is The Lakers’ general manager, but the veteran took the most unexpected decision, much to the surprise and consternation of Warriors’ fans, who are now pointing accusing fingers.
Aside bolts of amazement raised over his choice for a ‘smaller’ franchise in the NBA, compared to Lakers’ standards, the initial thought was that the 2015 finals’ most valuable player would secure a buyout with Memphis and would be free to sign with the contender of his choice.
However, officials insist Iguodala was traded to Memphis as part of a sign-and-trade with the Nets that sent Kevin Durant to Brooklyn and D’Angelo Russell to the Warriors.
Dramatically, Dallas Mavericks have also popped up into the cloud of controversy surrounding Iguodala, as DallasBasketball.com writer, Mike Fisher disclosed that The Mavs are discussing his trade with Memphis.
The Mavericks’ long-standing desire to shed themselves of Courtney Lee has manifested itself in a bid from Dallas to Memphis that would send Lee and a second-round pick to The Grizzlies in exchange for Iguodala.
However, sources further told DallasBasketball.com that The Grizzlies’ response is that they are unwilling to take the ballast of Lee’s $12.759m salary in such a deal.
The Mavs can pay $5m as a sweetener, thus saving Memphis $9.4m from where it currently stands, with $5m from Dallas and $4.4m being the sum total difference between Lee and Iguodala.
So, while Dallas can feel it “wins” the trade, Memphis can do the same, as Grizzlies’ net would be The Warriors’ first-round pick they got with the Iguodala trade along with a Dallas second-rounder, all for the cost of paying Lee about $7.7m.
Fisher wrote further; stating: “If you’re a Warriors fan and are hoping that Iguodala somehow ends up back with the Dubs next season, you want him to get traded to Dallas.
“Why? If the Mavs are out of playoff contention in mid-to-late February (which is very possible considering the stacked Western Conference), they would be inclined to agree to a buyout with Iguodala.
“If that happens, he could sign with the Warriors for an expected playoff push (but there are also a lot of) important caveats.
“A lot can change between now and then and we don’t know if either side wants this to happen, and we don’t know if the Warriors will be in position to strike considering their hard-capped situation.
“However, The Grizzlies execute a buyout with Iguodala (which they likely won’t because they should be able to acquire an asset in a trade).
“CBA rules would prevent Iguodala from signing with Dubs. Ultimately, a lot needs to happen for an Iguodala-Warriors reunion to become a reality, so don’t hold your breath.”