Grizzles, Gay agree to five-year extension

Panic has set in in Memphis, as the Grizzlies have agreed to a five-year extension for Rudy Gay without letting the restricted free agent test the market.

The Memphis Grizzlies and restricted free-agent Rudy Gay have agreed in principle on a five-year contract, The Commercial Appeal has learned.

NBA sources indicated that Gay will sign the deal on or soon after July 8 when teams are allowed to finalize contracts.

Gay’s starting salary will be the maximum allowed a player with his experience – projected to be roughly $13.3 million – according to sources.

I highlighted the key part in bold. The Grizzlies waited all this time, said over and over that they’d match any offer he received, and then they turned around and gave him a max deal before he had a chance to sign an offer sheet.

Why not let Gay go out and negotiate a deal and then match it? Why agree to pay him the max when there’s no proof that he’d get a max offer?

Yes, he was likely to get a big offer, and perhaps the Grizzlies just wanted to be proactive and keep one of their star players happy. But by making this deal, they may have cost themselves millions of dollars. Rudy Gay is no ‘max’ player, at least not at this stage of his career.

But he’s about to make max money.


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