O.J. Mayo To Opt Out, Become Free Agent

O.J. Mayo will not pick up his player option for next season, opting instead to hit free agency, according to Earl K. Sneed of Mavs.com (Twitter link). Sneed adds that Mayo is hoping to sign a long-term deal with the Mavericks.

Mayo, 25, would make $4.2MM in the last season of his two-year contract with Dallas if he were to exercise his option. Instead, he figures to receive a raise, and should land a multiyear guarantee as well.

When I examined Mayo's free agent stock last month, I wrote that I expected him to easily exceed the mid-level deals signed by players like Jason Terry, Jamal Crawford, and Louis Williams in 2012. However, his stock may have taken a bit of a hit since then. April was his worst month with the Mavs, as he averaged only 8.6 PPG on 38.5% shooting, both well below his full-season marks (15.3 PPG, 44.9% shooting). He also drew the ire of coach Rick Carlisle, who had some harsh criticism for Mayo after a loss this week.

According to Ric Bucher of 95.7 The Game (via Sulia), there's a noticeable divide in the perception around the league on how much Mayo could earn in free agency. Bucher writes that some GMs don't think he'll earn much more than the $4MM he made this season, while others think he could make up to $10-12MM annually.

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