Well all knew it probably wouldn’t happen. But with Sam Presti, you never can tell. However, Jeff Green won’t be getting a contract extension before Nov. 1 meaning that he’ll become a restricted free agent next summer.
The two sides had quality negotiations and good talks, but as the time got closer to actually hammer out something specific, it kind of all fell apart.
“Signing a player to an extension is certainly a positive, but has become more unique,” Presti told The Oklahoman. “We explored the concept and had positive dialogue, but we will have to re-visit the discussions in the future. As we have consistently stated, drafting Jeff in 2007 and watching his development over the last three seasons has furthered our appreciation for his team-driven contributions on and off the floor.”
Green said he’s happy this out in the open so now he can move on and hopefully will stop getting questions on it.
So how’s this sit with you? Do you think Green should’ve been extended? Is this smart? My feeling is that it’s a very Presti-ish move not to extend Green because with the new CBA coming and the potential for players in Green’s salary bracket to get their money dropped significantly, Oklahoma City might be saving some good money here. Plus, now Jeff Green has got to prove his worth, something he really hasn’t done yet. Monetary motivation is always a good thing.
But at the same time, it’s a risk. I know the jury is still out on Green, but I want him here in OKC. Maybe not as the starting power forward (I still haven’t made up my mind there), but on the roster for sure. Now though, Presti takes the chance of letting some moron general manager out there offer up $60 million over four years to Green. And if Presti doesn’t match, then we say goodbye to Uncle Jeff.
If there weren’t so many moron GMs out there, I wouldn’t be worried. But since there’s more than enough to go around, Green could get scooped up.
However, at the same time, there’s potential for us to settle on Green’s true market value. I’m sure Green’s camp is overvaluing him right now. Maybe they’re asking for $10 million a year while Presti only wants to do $8 million per. Now there’s a chance for the open market to sort that out. Again, there’s risk in that, but this is an opportunity to determine what Green might really be worth to another team and to the Thunder.
My feeling is that Jeff Green says with this team in the future. But I could be wrong there. There have been lots of guys that have gone to restricted free agency and returned to their teams. It happens as much or more than players signing extensions. So the fact OKC didn’t ink Green isn’t a huge deal. For instance, Rudy Gay last summer. Or Al Horford this year. It happens a lot. So we’ll just have to wait and see what turns out.