There is mutual interest between Joe Ingles and the Jazz in the player returning to Utah next season, Gordon Monson of The Salt Lake Tribune writes. The 27-year-old can become a restricted free agent this summer if Utah extends him a qualifying offer worth $1,045,059. This would allow the Jazz to match any offer sheets the forward was to receive this offseason. Ingles is ineligible to ink an extension since his current deal was for a single season, and extensions are only for contracts that cover four or more years. The Jazz hold Ingles’ Non-Bird rights, which means they will only be able to offer the forward 20% above the minimum unless they utilize cap space or another exception.
Ingles arrived in Utah back in October after being released by the Clippers and claimed off of waivers. Jazz GM Dennis Lindsey was very complimentary of the Australian, telling Monson, “He’s exceeded our expectations as a teammate and a competitor. He’s an NBA player. He’s proved that this year. Hopefully, his experience has been good enough that he’ll consider us when the time comes.”
The appreciation isn’t one-sided, with Ingles proclaiming himself a fan of the organization. “Being here has been one of the best experiences I’ve had in basketball,” said Ingles. “It’s been great. The guys are unselfish and fun and I’ve had a great time. I love Utah and I’d like to come back. I feel like I’ve found the enjoyment of playing the game again here. Last year, at Maccabi Tel Aviv, was good. This has taken it to another level. I’d love to …”
In 78 appearances for the Jazz this season, including 31 as a starter, Ingles is averaging 5.1 points, 2.2 rebounds, and 2.3 assists in 21.2 minutes per night. His slash line is .422/.362/.750.