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Buffs in the NBA: Dinwiddie declines player option with Brooklyn Nets

Spencer Dinwiddie will be an unrestricted free agent.

Brooklyn Nets v Charlotte Hornets Photo by Kent Smith/NBAE via Getty Images

First reported by Adrian Wojnarowki and now official, Spencer Dinwiddie has turned out his player option with the Brooklyn Nets, thereby making him a free agent in the 2021 offseason.

After years on the waiver wire, Dinwiddie finally stuck on the rebuilding Nets. He started in 58 of his 80 appearances, averaging over 12 points and 6 assists per game. His next season was even better as he emerged as a Sixth Man of the Year finalist after upping his scoring average to better than 17 per game.

Brooklyn found a gem and offered him a 3-year, $34 million contract during the 2018-19 season. Although underpaid relative to expectation, the deal gave him long-term stability after struggling with knee injuries early in his career — including a torn ACL in his final season at Colorado, which caused him to fall to the second round in the 2014 draft.

The deal was a win-win for both sides, but that took a turn during this past season. After a summer of nonstop trade rumors, Dinwiddie suffered an ACL injury just three games into the season. A few weeks later, the Nets made the trade for James Harden, adding yet another ball handler to this loaded roster.

Dinwiddie opting out makes sense across the board. He turned down only one year for $12 million, and even though he’s recovering from that ACL injury, he can easily make that much on his next contract, with additional years attached.

He could still re-sign in Brooklyn. The Nets have his Bird Rights and can offer him something around 4-years, $48 million if they so choose. There will be other suitors in a barren free agency landscape, so Dinwiddie will have plenty of options if he wants more minutes and more responsibility in Brooklyn.