New Orleans Pelicans star Ryan Anderson is set to become an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career. Anderson is drawing huge interests from many NBA teams due to his stellar show this season.
Pelicans boss, Alvin Gentry, has started discussing the future of the franchisee openly. The Pelicans want to retain Anthony Davis, the 22-year-old and three-time All-star, who signed a maximum contract extension last season as a core piece.
The Pelicans decided not to deal with the power forward Anderson before the February 18 deadline. But Ryan Anderson’s future is uncertain with the team. Anderson will be commanding a maximum contract in the free agency market as the 27-year-old Anderson has revealed that he hasn’t spoken to the Pelicans’ management about future prospects yet.
“Obviously that’s 21 games from now. That’s a situation that I’ll approach then,” Anderson said, according to ESPN. “It’s not something I can even think about right now. … Although I know you guys want an answer right now [laughs], but I don’t have one for you. I really don’t. Anything can happen. I’ve never been a part of free agency, an unrestricted free agent. I don’t know what it’s like. I don’t know what it’s gonna be like. Don’t know who’s gonna come into play — at all. It’s definitely something I’ll approach then.”
Sources closer to Anderson reveal that the power forward is leaning towards leaving Pelicans in the coming offseason. And he has a long list of suitors, which include the Washington Wizards (who eventually acquired Markieff Morris), Detroit Pistons (who eventually acquired Tobias Harris), Cleveland Cavaliers (who eventually acquired Channing Frye), Los Angeles Clippers (who eventually acquired Jeff Green), Sacramento Kings and Phoenix Suns pitched offers for Anderson prior to the trade deadline last month, according to the Basketball Insiders.
Anderson posted an impressive 16.9 points and 5.9 rebounds this season coming off the bench, his best in his four-year stint with the Pelicans. But the injury riddled Pelicans are currently 24-38 and are virtually out of the reckoning for the playoffs.
The teams are looking for big-men in the power forward position and Anderson is looking for a change and more prominent role at this point of his career. “For me individually, if I’m going to talk about myself, I grew up a lot over the past four years. You can’t take things too seriously. This game can frustrate you, it can get in your head, but there’s more important things in life and I think that’s definitely what it’s taught me here. But, yeah. This four years have been a big molding point in my life, I think. To really change my mind about how I think about life in general. It’s changed me outside of basketball more than it has inside of basketball.” Ryan Anderson is almost certain of changing colors this offseason.