NBA Rumor: DeMar DeRozan Free Agency

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Heat keeping Duncan Robinson?

The Heat, I’m told, are likewise strong favorites to re-sign restricted free agent sharpshooter Duncan Robinson with or without the addition of DeRozan and are believed to be attempting to make all of these moves without surrendering Tyler Herro via trade. Longtime Heat executive Andy Elisburg, regarded as one of the league’s foremost salary-cap savants, will only add to his legend if Miami can get all that done.

Clippers joining race for DeMar DeRozan?

DeMar DeRozan is expected to be among the most desired players in free agency, with several teams being interested in signing the veteran forward. According to Marc J. Spears, the LA Clippers are joining the bidding war for DeRozan. The same can be said for the New York Knicks, the Chicago Bulls, the Los Angeles Lakers and his current team, the San Antonio Spurs. DeRozan, an LA native, could definitely see his free agency as a chance to return home and play for the Lakers or the Clippers.

DeRozan’s interest in New York is unclear. The Knicks have the cap space to make DeRozan an attractive offer. DeRozan reportedly has interest in signing with the Lakers. It would take a lot of roster movement for the Lakers to be able to offer DeRozan something close to what the Knicks can offer. Worth noting on Dinwiddie: Aside from the Knicks’ interest, at least one team has concrete plans to make the guard a strong offer in free agency, sources say.

DeMar DeRozan to take a 'wide open' approach to free agency in terms of landing spots

A source with knowledge of DeRozan’s outlook said he’ll be taking a “wide open” approach to free agency in terms of possible landing spots. But after these past three seasons in San Antonio, where he was asked to sacrifice on the scoring front and evolve as a playmaker in the process, the master of the midrange has put himself in prime position to take advantage of this well-earned reputation as a more versatile offensive threat.

But DeRozan is more likely to opt in with the Spurs. Among the likely free agents, there aren’t any five-alarm guys, but I do think Evan Fournier has a bit of a warning flag attached. He’s coming off a career year at 27 that featured shooting percentages far above his career norms, so he’s likely to regress. That would have a rebuilding Knicks team buying into a declining commodity. I have him projected at a $12.5 million value next season and likely to go further downward from there, and he’s going to get way more than that if he chooses free agency. (Fournier has a player option for $17.1 million.) He’s not a bad player, but he’s the wrong one for a team like the Knicks.

DeMar DeRozan unhappy in San Antonio

In a recent episode of ESPN San Antonio’s “The Blitz”, Young expressed that DeRozan could possibly be leaving the Spurs this summer. “I don’t have to sugarcoat anything. DeMar DeRozan is not happy in San Antonio,” Jabari Young said. “The offense is not running smoothly as one should think with a guy like him in the lineup. There are problems. They’re not winning. They don’t look like they enjoy playing with each other. The roster just doesn’t fit”

DeMar DeRozan unhappy in San Antonio

In a recent episode of ESPN San Antonio’s “The Blitz”, Young expressed that DeRozan could possibly be leaving the Spurs this summer. “I don’t have to sugarcoat anything. DeMar DeRozan is not happy in San Antonio,” Jabari Young said. “The offense is not running smoothly as one should think with a guy like him in the lineup. There are problems. They’re not winning. They don’t look like they enjoy playing with each other. The roster just doesn’t fit”

DeMar DeRozan opting out?

If swingman DeMar DeRozan and the San Antonio Spurs can’t agree to an extension by the late June deadline, the four-time All-Star intends to decline his $27.7 million player option for next season to become an unrestricted free agent, league sources told Yahoo Sports. DeRozan, who has averaged 20 points in his 11-year career, would be among the top players on the market this summer. DeRozan declining his option wouldn’t close the door on him re-signing with the Spurs, sources said, but it would definitely open an avenue for a team like the New York Knicks, who are expected to be interested.

DeRozan, Spurs far apart on extension talks

A source with knowledge of the situation says the Spurs and DeRozan have continued to discuss a possible extension, but the two sides remain quite a ways apart. (As our Shams Charania recently reported, a max extension for DeRozan would be four years, $150 million; a deal can be agreed upon up until the start of free agency). For San Antonio’s purposes, a two-year deal would be preferable as a way to maintain future flexibility while securing a player in DeRozan, who – if he opts out – would be the best wing scorer on the market. If the 30-year-old DeRozan picks up the option, however, he could reap the benefits of a 2021 summer in which the cap is expected to spike to approximately $125 million (looming China factor notwithstanding).

DeRozan may have grown up idolizing his hometown’s most glamorous franchise. He may have grown up admiring Kobe Bryant, imitating his moves and later dubbing him “the top five greatest player of all time.” Yet, DeRozan refused to compromise the same affection he has for the Raptors after they selected him ninth overall in the 2009 NBA draft. “When you have an opportunity to go home, that’s something that certainly would cross your mind. But it wasn’t anything,” DeRozan told Southern California News Group. “After I finish playing, I’m pretty sure I’ll live in L.A. But I just wanted to do something special and leave a legacy of my own in Toronto.”

Similarly Aaron Goodwin – DeRozan’s longtime agent – isn’t known as a Scott Boras type, who’s looking to extract every last dollar and willing to use every conceivable ounce of leverage to do so. When the Raptors were negotiating the four-year extension with DeRozan, Goodwin ultimately put the decision in his client’s hands, according to sources, recognizing that in the end it would be the player, not him, who would be living and working under the terms of the deal. And it’s important to note that the Raptors have a considerable advantage in being able to offer DeRozan the best deal. They can pay him the aforementioned $153 million over five years while any other team can only offer $114 million over four.

Raptors GM Masai Ujiri updated the status of DeRozan in a guest appearance on Dean Blundell & Co., Thursday morning. “We’re nowhere because right now we cant (talk),” Ujiri told hosts Joey Vendetta and George Rusic on Sportsnet 590 The Fan. “Everything stops until July 1. So we’re still in the same place we were at the end of the season. We talked and had a good exit meeting. I will fly down to see DeMar at some point in the next couple of weeks to have a good chat with him and we’ll go from there.”
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September 22, 2021 | 7:42 pm EDT Update