Potential Destinations for Buyout Candidate Andre Iguodala
By Dan Israeli
The Golden State Warriors as we knew them for the past three seasons have changed. As part of the highly convoluted sign-and-trade deal that sent Kevin Durant to the Nets and brought D'Angelo Russell to the Warriors, Andre Iguodala was also shipped out of town to the Memphis Grizzlies, ending his six-year stint with Golden State.
As soon as Iguodala was linked to the Grizzlies, however, buyout rumors began to emerge as the 35-year-old is likely headed to a new team when all is said and done. As the veteran and former Finals MVP seems determined to make one more run at a title, here are the three most likely destinations once, or if, the Grizzlies buyout his remaining contract.
3. Philadelphia 76ers
The Sixers also underwent a major makeover during the first two days of free agency, losing Jimmy Butler and JJ Redick, while gaining Al Horford and Josh Richardson. Now, the team is rumored as one of the destinations for Iguodala, which would serve as a homecoming for the former 76er who spent the first eight years of his career in Philly. Iguodala would bring some much-needed veteran leadership to the Sixers, while also adding a strong defender off the bench to compliment an already stifling starting five.
2. Houston Rockets
The first team rumored to be going after Iguodala was the Rockets, who are desperate to shake up their roster after another disappointing postseason in which they failed to get past the Warriors. While Golden State will surely be weakened this upcoming season, the Rockets now have to contend with the emerging threat out of Los Angeles, as the Lakers are rumored to have a good chance at signing Kawhi Leonard to team up with LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Iggy would fit in great off the bench for the Rockets, and would pair nicely with PJ Tucker in small ball, defensive-focused lineups.
1. Los Angeles Lakers
Perhaps the biggest reason the Rockets should be coveting Iguodala is to block him from the Lakers, who have now emerged as the leading candidate for the veteran's services, according to ESPN's Stephen A. Smith. The Lakers are in desperate need of bodies after trading three key rotation pieces to New Orleans for Davis, and Iggy would possibly even start for the team depending on what happens with Kawhi and other potential signings. Iguodala is also a former client of Lakers GM Rob Pelinka, for what it's worth.
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