Andre Iguodala reportedly might not hit the open market after all.
The Memphis Grizzlies, who acquired the longtime Warriors forward in a July salary dump following Kevin Durant's decision to join the Brooklyn Nets, are "refusing right now" to discuss buying out the 35-year-old, The Athletic and Stadium's Shams Charnia reported Monday, citing sources.
Sources: Memphis wants three-time champion Andre Iguodala to report to training camp and is refusing right now to engage in buyout, which would prevent Iguodala from finishing a Hall of Fame career on his terms because this may be his final NBA season.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) September 9, 2019
Shortly after Iguodala was traded to the Grizzlies, ESPN's Tim MacMahon reported in July that the Grizzlies were "actively exploring the trade market" for the veteran. Trading for Iguodala, the 2015 NBA Finals MVP, reportedly was the Rockets' No.1 priority in mid-July, according to The Athletic's Sam Amick. ESPN's Stephen A. Smith, meanwhile, said on July 1 that Iguodala's plan was to "work out a buyout and then go to the Lakers."
Of course, none of those things ultimately happened, and Iguodala has remained on the Grizzlies' roster through the bulk of the offseason. Iguodala "desires a contender at this stage," according to Charania.
Iguodala is VP of NBPA, one of league's most respected and desires a contender at this stage. Young, rebuilding Grizzlies received a valuable 2024 1st from Golden State in Iguodala trade, and after Dwight Howard buyout, were expected to eventually have same talks with Iguodala. https://t.co/feAQl4Jbv0— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) September 9, 2019
Whether Charania's reporting pressures the Grizzlies to grant Iguodala's apparent wish remains to be seen, but Iguodala is closer to the end of his career than the beginning. He averaged a career-low 5.7 points and 23.2 minutes per game in his 15th NBA season, but the Warriors outscored their opponents by 9.0 points per 100 possessions when he was on the court. When he wasn't, Golden State outscored opponents by 4.9 points per 100 possessions.
Iguodala still has something to contribute, and his veteran knowledge could be an asset for a young Grizzlies team. Those appear to be competing interests at this point, however, making the former Warrior's situation one to keep an eye on as the season nears.
Don't expect a Warriors reunion, though. Iguodala would have to sign with -- or get traded to -- another team before it could become a possibility, and the Warriors are hard-capped this season because of the D'Angelo Russell sign-and-trade. Golden State currently doesn't have enough room under the salary cap to fit another guaranteed contract.
In other words, just wait for the jersey retirement.