The Golden State Warriors won’t just be losing Kevin Durant to the Brooklyn Nets, as part of a sign-and-trade deal that will send D’Angelo Russell to the Bay Area. In order to make room for Russell, the Warriors traded 2015 NBA Finals MVP Andre Iguodala to the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for future draft picks. But if the latest rumors are to be believed, “Iggy” might be wearing another team’s jersey once the 2019-20 NBA season kicks off in October, as he could be headed instead to the Los Angeles Lakers if he can negotiate a buyout with Memphis.
As quoted by NBC Sports Bay Area, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said on his radio show on Monday that, per sources, Iguodala has told people he knows that he plans to “work out a buyout” with the Grizzlies and sign a free-agent contract with the Lakers.
“So Andre Iguodala is planning on joining the Lakers from what we’re being told,” Smith continued. “I don’t know how true that is, whether or not it is going to definitively happen. But that is the plan at this particular moment in time.”
Not long after Smith commented on Iguodala’s situation, ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne explained on Twitter that the 35-year-old wingman does have ties with the Lakers, as he was once a client of current Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka. She added that it won’t be a surprise if Los Angeles does indeed make a move for Iguodala if he doesn’t stay long in Memphis.
Per the terms of the three-year contract he signed with the Warriors in 2017, Iguodala is set to earn a shade under $17.2 million in the 2019-20 season. However, as NBC Sports Bay Area pointed out, there’s a good chance the longtime Warriors sixth man will have to “relinquish several million” if the Grizzlies are to buy his contract out.
A 15-year veteran who was picked ninth overall in the 2004 NBA Draft, Iguodala had several seasons averaging in double figures for the Philadelphia 76ers and Denver Nuggets before he was traded to the Golden State Warriors in the summer of 2013, per Basketball-Reference. During his time with the Warriors, “Iggy” mostly came off the bench for a team that would go on to win three NBA championships, but came up short last month against the Toronto Raptors in the 2019 NBA Finals.
Last season, Iguodala registered 5.7 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game in 68 regular-season games for the Warriors. He has career averages of 12.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, 4.4 assists, and 1.5 steals per game, with one All-Star Game appearance and two All-Defensive Team selections also under his belt.