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Andre Iguodala Rumors: Latest Buzz Surrounding Nuggets Star

DENVER, CO - APRIL 17:  Andre Iguodala #9 of the Denver Nuggets controls the ball against the Phoenix Suns at the Pepsi Center on April 17, 2013 in Denver, Colorado. The Nuggets defeated the Suns 118-98. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
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Mike HoagCorrespondent IIJune 14, 2013

Andre Iguodala plans to opt out of his contract with the Denver Nuggets, but are his days in Denver at an end?

Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski broke the news on June 14 that Iguodala, approaching the last season of his contract, decided to opt out of the deal in order to enter free agency.

As a result, the star will leave $15.9 million on the table in hopes of signing a more lucrative and long-term deal.

Iguodala has until June 25 to exercise the termination clause on his contract.

The Nuggets have an advantage in terms of long-term stability, though, as the team can offer him a five-year deal as opposed to the four years other teams can provide.

Let’s take a look at the latest buzz around this big breaking development on the NBA free agency landscape.

 

Will He Stay or Will He Go?

So where does that leave his chances to returning to his soon-to-be former team?

"We are fully aware of Andre's intentions and he's well aware of how much we want him back. Andre is a huge priority for our organization," Nuggets CEO Josh Kroenke said, according to Wojnarowski.

His decision to opt out may have been a result of the team parting ways with George Karl last week. When asked about the firing, Iguodala was noncommittal in his reply.

“Good question. Need some time to let it sink in,” Iguodala said, according to David Aldridge of NBA.com.

Whether or not that was the motivating factor in him making this move remains to be seen.

Denver does have one thing working in its favor, though. Iguodala would have only had the option to sign a three-year extension with the Nuggets had he chosen not to opt out and negotiate a new deal with the team next season. That means that this move is still a logical step towards him remaining with the Nuggets.

Kroenke must move quickly to secure a top-tier coach and present Iguodala with a competitive plan for the future if he hopes to retain the stalwart defender before the rest of the league pounces.

 

Golden State Warriors

Bay Area News Group Warriors beat writer Marcus Thompson was quick to the punch after Wojnarowski broke the news. He said the team is interested and has liked Iguodala for a while.

Further, Thompson said the feeling is mutual between the two parties:

If the Warriors want to land Iguodala they will need to execute a sign-and-trade deal with the Nuggets. They still have over $70 million on the books for next season, and such a deal is the only realistic way the Warriors could make Iguodala an option.

 

Other Teams in the Hunt

Golden State won’t be the only one in the hunt after free agency kicks off this summer. Wojnarowski broke down some of the potential suitors who will reportedly pursue the standout shooting guard:

After superstars Dwight Howard and Chris Paul, Iguodala will be a target for several teams, including the Atlanta Hawks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, Detroit Pistons and New Orleans Pelicans, league sources said.

With the fates of Chris Paul and Dwight Howard becoming seemingly intertwined, Iguodala will be the obvious next choice for teams missing out on those two superstars.

ESPN’s Chris Broussard reported the two friends were currently discussing ways that they could end up playing together next season.

Of the teams listed, the Warriors and the young and promising Houston Rockets appear to be intriguing options for Iguodala. His solid all-around game and flexibility could help put either of those two teams over the top.

Where he will end up, though, will continue to be a primary focus of NBA rumors this summer.

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