Dallas Mavericks shooting guard Monta Ellis has decided to opt out of the final year of his deal, making him an unrestricted free agent. From Chris Broussard of ESPN:
Source: Monta Ellis will not opt-in to the final yr of his contract & will thus become a free agent this summer. Indiana & Miami interested
— Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) June 24, 2015
This does not come as a big surprise. Ellis developed some chemistry problems with other players this past season and the coaching staff has complained about his attitude.
Tim MacMahon of ESPN said this a while back about Ellis:
“Ellis had nothing to say, refusing to stop to talk to reporters as he exited the locker room with headphones covering his ears. Ellis often bucks NBA rules by blowing off the media, particularly after poor performances.”
With the combination of Ellis’ problems and Rajon Rondo’s, it is time for Dallas to part ways with both players and start a fresh new backcourt. With Ellis opting out, it saves the Mavericks close to $9 million in cap space. That could help if the team wants to lure big name free agents, like LaMarcus Aldridge for example.
This also isn’t the first time we’ve seen problems with Ellis. He had issues while he was on both the Golden State Warriors and the Milwaukee Bucks. Broussard stated that the Pacers and Heat are both interested. If Dwyane Wade leaves Miami, then I can see the Heat going after Ellis to replace him. For Indiana, it would be the better fit because when Paul George was down they lacked a go-to scorer, and I think Ellis fits that description well. Even when PG is back they could have a deadly 1-2 combo and that is good enough for a weak Eastern Conference.
The 29-year-old Ellis still has a lot of basketball left, but will his attitude and negative history cause teams not to sign him? I don’t think so now, but I do think that this will be his last shot.