Reports: Spurs and Danny Green agree to three-year, $12 million deal
And I thought Monday night was going to be a slow news night for the Spurs. After we had the relative “meh” of hearing Lorbek will be re-upping with Barcelona, big news hits courtesy of Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports: the Spurs and Danny Green have agreed to a three-year, $12 million deal, all of it guaranteed.
Upon first look, this deal seems fair for both sides. Green got himself a significant raise, and a deserved one at that. In his first real season in the NBA, one where he went from borderline D-Leaguer to bonafide NBA rotation player, Green started 38 of 66 games and shot almost 44% from 3-point range. He gave the starting unit a solid defensive player to put on both shooting and point guards, while helping the offense by simply knocking down open shots. He’ll never been confused with a star, and he got a deal that reflects that. Seriously, how did Landry Fields get $20 million over three years?
For the Spurs, they brought back a key cog from last year’s team that tied for the best record in the NBA at a modest price. One of the dirty little secrets in the NBA is that role players are vastly overpaid based on their production and value to a franchise, but the Spurs are one of the best at avoiding such inflated contracts. If Green put up similar numbers for a different team last year (*cough* the Knicks *cough*), it’s not unreal for him to have gotten a larger contract. The Knicks gave Steve Novak, the same guy the Spurs waived in training camp, $15 million over four years earlier today for doing essentially the same thing as Green on offense (perimeter shooting) while adding none of the defensive qualities.
There is some concern about the contract being fully guaranteed after his no-show in the Western Conference Finals and the possibility that he could be a one year wonder. Wouldn’t the Spurs want to have the last year only partially guaranteed in case Green flops once he gets paid? I don’t know, but I think Green can still improve. He’s obviously worked hard to the point where he is right now, it’s not likely that work ethic is going to go away, especially within the culture of the Spurs organization. If all else fails, it’s at least a tradable contract.
Coming into the free agency process, I feel like Danny Green had his head on straight. He’s a very likable guy, easily one of the friendliest players on the team. The Spurs don’t bring in guys who aren’t good in the locker room, and Green might be one of the best. When asked about his free agency earlier in the summer, Green told the Express-News, “For me, it’s a balance of the money, the team, the fit.” That tells me that he’s very honest about his ability, and he doesn’t have people around him gassing him up. He knows a huge reason why he was in such a good position in free agency was because the Spurs system maximizes his abilities. It’s all about finding the right situation for young players, and Green definitely found his.