Golden State’s roster got a shakeup this summer with Kevin Durant leaving, and they needed to get younger and more athletic around their remaining big three (Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green).
That meant Andre Iguodala was out, given a heads up by the team then traded in a salary dump to Memphis. The conventional wisdom around the league was that the Grizzlies would buy out Iguodala, who is likely playing his final NBA season and wants to do so on a contender.
Except, nothing is ever as easy as it should be in Memphis, as Shams Charania of The Athletic notes in this report.
This sounds like a leverage play from an agent.
From the Grizzlies’ perspective, why buy Iguodala out now? Wait until the trade deadline, see if you can trade him and get an asset back to help your rebuild, and if not buy him out then. In the interim, a veteran leader and consummate professional such as Iguodala would be welcomed in a young Memphis locker room with players such as Jaren Jackson Jr. and Ja Morant.
However, that’s not what Iguodala would want. He would want to be with whatever contending team he’s going to join for the full season. He wants a buyout sooner rather than later.
Maybe that means Iguodala will have to give up more than just the price of a minimum contract to get a buyout done. We’ll see how this all plays out. But someone is trying to gain a little leverage with this leak.