Reason #2. Oladipo will cash out in free agency
Assuming that Oladipo doesn’t sign an extension with whichever team he’s dealt to, he’ll have the opportunity to receive a fruitful deal in free agency after this season. Oladipo could be the only marquee player available in this year’s crop of free agents, especially now that Giannis Antetokounmpo has already agreed to terms on an extension.
ESPN’s Brian Windhorst recently joined The Hoop Collective podcast and explained how Oladipo could benefit from a relatively weaker free agent class.
“There’s going to be 10 teams with $20+ million in cap space and there’s not going to be 10 players worth getting that. So I think there’s a reasonable gamble for Victor that he can find a contract that’s at least equal to that.
Even if he doesn’t and he gets a little bit less, it’s worth the gamble for him to go into free agency.”
Oladipo is essentially acknowledging that he’ll land a similar deal on the open market, which is far from an unprecedented move, as Gordon Hayward should have given him reason to be hopeful. If you recall, Hayward decided against exercising his 2020-21 player option for $34.2 million, which was a decision that many didn’t envision.
However, Hayward was able to land a four-year deal with the Charlotte Hornets worth $120 million, paying him nearly the same average annual value as the bloated figure that he declined. With this in mind, it shouldn’t be a surprise if Oladipo follows in Hayward’s footsteps.
Next: No. 1