The Nets thought they had solidified their bench this past summer with the free agent signings of Shane Larkin, Thomas Robinson, Wayne Ellington and Andrea Bargnani. Unfortunately for the team, and its fanbase, none of those additions has paid much in the way of dividends as of this writing. All four signings were considered low-risk at the time, but NetsDaily opined recently that one or all of these arrangements could potentially hurt the team’s cap flexibility this summer.
All four players were given player options in their deals, and with the struggles of the team and the players, an increasing chance exists that those options will be exercised, according to the NetsDaily scribe. The amounts of the options are listed below:
- Ellington — $1,567,500
- Bargnani — $1,551,659
- Larkin — $1,500,000
- Robinson — $1,050,961
None of these figures would be crippling individually, and even in the worst-case scenario (as posited by NetsDaily) where all four opt in, their salaries would only total $5,670,120. But Brooklyn is bereft of draft picks for the near future and sorely lacking in tradeable talent, so any forward progress will likely need to occur via free agency. The Nets, like most franchises, are likely to aim big when filling out their free agent wish list for this coming offseason. The team is currently projected to possess in the neighborhood of $32MM-$38MM in cap space, a number that includes all four of the aforementioned players.
That amount wouldn’t be sufficient to sign two max salary players, which would likely be required to make the Nets a contender next season. Even if the franchise were lucky enough to entice one top-tier free agent, it wouldn’t leave much cap space to supplement the roster. But if you subtract the four player options, the team would have a bit more in the coffers to restock its talent.
This brings me to the topic for today: Out of the four offseason signees who possess player options (Shane Larkin, Thomas Robinson, Wayne Ellington and Andrea Bargnani), which, if any, should the Nets look to retain? Why?
Take to the comments section below to share your thoughts and opinions on the subject. We look forward to what you have to say.