After striking out with small forwards DeMarre Carroll and Danny Green at the outset of today’s NBA free agency binger, the Detroit Pistons just might have a sense of renewed hope when it comes to reeling in a familiar face.
Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports reported earlier this afternoon that restricted free agent forward Draymond Green and agent B.J. Armstrong (yes, that B.J. Armstrong) have broken off contract talks with the Golden State Warriors.
According to sources, the Warriors have been surprised by the heavy duty contracts offered thus far to free agent forwards Carroll (four years, $60 million), Khris Middleton (five years, $70 million), and Paul Millsap (four years, $80 million).
As a result, there may be a gap between what the Warriors are willing to offer and what Green may believe he deserves in comparison to what his fellow free agent forwards appear in line to receive in the coming days and weeks.
Green, a Saginaw native, finished second in the 2014-15 Defensive Player of the Year voting, playing an integral role in leading the Warriors to their first NBA championship in 40 years. He averaged career highs in nearly every statistical category this past season, stuffing each corner of the stat sheet to the tune of 11.7 points per game, 8.2 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 1.6 steals, and 1.3 blocks. He also recorded the first NBA Finals triple-double in Warriors history during their Game 6 clincher.
The Pistons have been loosely connected to Green’s impending free agency since this past February, when he suggested he had significant interest in returning to his home state to play basketball. However, as his expected salary demands sky rocketed (he’s likely to push for a max or near-max offer), the Pistons interest reportedly cooled.
That said, with Carroll and Danny Green now off the table, Pistons head coach and team president Stan Van Gundy may have to alter the playbook in their continued search for a starting small forward. That could mean renewed interest in Draymond.
Due to Green’s restricted free agency status, the Pistons cannot present an offer until July 9 at the earliest. The Warriors would then have 72 hours to decide whether to match the offer and retain his rights.
“Our philosophy is we’d have to be really, really careful,” Van Gundy said earlier this week. “We’d have to have a pretty good indication that there was a high probability that the teams would not match an offer sheet.”