It appears that the Memphis Grizzlies are determined to hang on to recently acquired wingman Andre Iguodala, despite rampant rumors suggesting that he may be a top candidate to have his contract bought out by his current team.
On Monday, The Athletic's Shams Charania took to Twitter to report that the Grizzlies are "refusing right now" to buy out Iguodala's contract and are expecting the multi-titled veteran to report to training camp ahead of the upcoming 2019-20 campaign. As Charania further explained, this move could potentially prevent Iguodala from wrapping up a possible Hall of Fame-worthy career on his own terms, given that the 35-year-old former NBA Finals MVP might be hanging up his sneakers and retiring after this season.
As recalled by Bleacher Report, Iguodala became a member of the Golden State Warriors in 2013 and, after winning three championships with the team, was traded to the Grizzlies early in July. The outlet explained that this was because Golden State needed to free up some salary-cap space in order to complete the sign-and-trade deal that sent D'Angelo Russell to the Warriors and Kevin Durant to the Brooklyn Nets.
The news of the Grizzlies' apparent plans to retain Iguodala in the lead-up to training camp comes amid various reports linking the 15-year NBA veteran to multiple suitors. As reported last week by The Inquisitr, these organizations include the Los Angeles Clippers, as Iguodala was believed at the time to be close to joining recent superstar acquisitions Kawhi Leonard and Paul George on the same team. It wasn't specified, however, whether the Clippers were planning to trade for him or to sign him after a potential contract buyout.Additionally, Bleacher Report cited a July tweet from Marc Stein of The New York Times, which suggested that the Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets, and Dallas Mavericks may also be interested in Iguodala's services. Stein also mentioned the wingman's former team right before joining the Warriors – the Denver Nuggets – as another candidate at the time to make a move for him during the offseason. However, the Nuggets eventually dropped out of the running for "Iggy," reportedly due to the prevailing belief that the Grizzlies would only trade him away if they received a future first-round pick in return.
If the Memphis Grizzlies decide to keep Andre Iguodala, they will be benefiting from a quality defensive player who typically didn't score much for the Warriors but nonetheless excelled as the team's sixth man. Bleacher Report added that Iguodala could also serve as a much-needed veteran mentor to the Grizzlies' young core, which will be led in the coming season by recent top-five draft picks Jaren Jackson Jr. and Ja Morant.