OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -Golden State point guard Baron Davis elected to become a free agent Monday night, opting out of the final year of his contract with the Warriors in a surprise move.
Davis had until Monday night to decide whether to turn down his $17.8 million contract for next season, the final year of a six-year deal. The Warriors didn't expect him to opt out of the deal despite little progress in the parties' long-term contract negotiation, but club spokesman Raymond Ridder said they received a letter from Davis' agent, Todd Ramasar, late Monday indicating his intentions.
Davis still could return to Golden State as a free agent, but his opt-out clause was his only bit of leverage in forcing contract talks with the Warriors before next summer. The former All-Star also is now free to negotiate with other clubs, possibly facilitating a sign-and-trade deal with Golden State.
Davis, a 29-year-old veteran, repeatedly has said he intended to return to Golden State, but he might be displeased by Warriors coach Don Nelson's recent declarations about giving more playing time to Golden State's young players, even at the expense of a few victories next season. Nelson reiterated his plan Monday at a news conference to introduce draft picks Anthony Randolph and Richard Hendrix.
Golden State also failed to improve its roster by using its $10 million trade exception this summer. The exception, which was acquired when the Warriors traded Jason Richardson to Charlotte last June, was due to expire on Monday night.
Davis averaged 21.8 points, 7.6 assists and 4.7 rebounds while playing in all 82 games last season for the Warriors, who finished with the best record in recent NBA history for a non-playoff team.
Davis led Golden State to the second round of the playoffs in 2007, breaking a 12-year postseason drought for the franchise. He added to that achievement by leading the Warriors' first-round upset of top-seeded Dallas.

Top NBA Public Bets

NBA Top Stories

Thumbnail Updated NBA Finals Odds After a busy week with the NBA Draft taking place, which team improved their odds to win the 2018 NBA Finals?
Thumbnail Will Fox be a top-5 pick? With the 2017 NBA Drafttakes place later tonight. Where can we expect one of the top prospects, De’Aaron Fox, to land tonight?
Thumbnail Fultz to go to the 76ers? The Boston Celticshave traded out of the No. 1 pick. The Philadelphia 76ersnow hold the top pick once again. Is it a slam dunk who they will take in the NBA...
Thumbnail 2018 NBA Finals Odds After dominating the 2017 NBA Playoffs, will anyone keep the Golden State Warriors from winning the NBA Finals again...
Thumbnail Stephen Curry Game 5 Props Will Stephen Curry bounce back from a poor showing in Game 4 when the Golden State Warriors host the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 of the NBA Finals tonight at 9PM...

NBA Team Pages