San Antonio Spurs

NBA Rumors: Clippers offered Marcus Morris large contract at start of free agency

NBA Rumors: Clippers offered Marcus Morris large contract at start of free agency

It's been a tumultuous offseason for Marcus Morris.

The former Celtics forward stirred up some controversy when he backed out of his agreement with the Spurs to sign with the Knicks in free agency. San Antonio offered Morris a two-year, $20 million deal, but he ultimately chose New York's one-year, $15 million offer instead.

That decision led to Morris parting ways with his agent, Rich Paul, and the Spurs reportedly being "pissed" about the 29-year-old's change of heart.

Apparently, San Antonio's offer wasn't the only one Morris turned down. According to Frank Isola of The Athletic, he also declined a three-year, $41 million offer from the Clippers at the start of free agency.

Isola writes:

Morris, however, lost out on a much more lucrative contract with the LA Clippers, who were prepared to pay him $41 million over three seasons. A Clippers source said the three-year deal included a provision for Morris to receive 50 percent of his salary on Oct. 1.

Morris was hoping to earn $40 million over two years but the Clippers couldn’t offer that deal if they wanted to sign Kawhi Leonard to a max contract. Once Morris took that stance, the Clippers moved on and acquired Portland’s Maurice Harkless in a four-team trade that included Jimmy Butler signing with the Miami Heat. Harkless will earn $11 million next season, or $2 million less than what Morris would have made with the Clippers.

The Clippers certainly aren't losing sleep over Morris declining their offer. They went on to sign superstar Kawhi Leonard and trade for another star in Paul George.

As for Morris, he might regret overestimating his market value early in the offseason. Fortunately for him, he'll get another shot at it next July with a new agent.

NBA rumors: Spurs 'pissed' about Marcus Morris free agency situation

NBA rumors: Spurs 'pissed' about Marcus Morris free agency situation

The San Antonio Spurs are not having a good summer,

They agreed to a two-year contract with Marcus Morris in NBA free agency, but the veteran forward reneged on the deal and instead signed a one-year, $15 million pact with the New York Knicks.

Frank Isola of The Athletic reported on the Morris situation Friday, and he got one general manager to explain how the Spurs are feeling.

What Morris and the Knicks pulled off can certainly be classified as unethical, but it’s not illegal. All’s fair in love, war and NBA free agency, even if the Spurs didn’t like it.

“They’re pissed” is how one general manager described it.

Morris would've been a nice upgrade for the Spurs, who have made zero notable improvements to a roster that finished as the No. 7 seed in the Western Conference last season. The main problem for San Antonio is many of its competitors in the West have gotten better this offseason, and the likelihood of the Spurs making any substantial improvements is now pretty low considering all of the top free agents already have signed.

The Spurs could look to trade star shooting guard DeMar DeRozan, who has one more year left on his contract, but that kind of move likely would result in the team punting on the 2019-20 season. As long as legendary head coach Gregg Popovich is still running the show, it's hard to envision the Spurs not trying to be as competitive as possible in the Western Conference playoff race.

The good news for the Spurs is talented point guard Dejounte Murray is set to return to the lineup after missing all of last season with a torn ACL. His comeback could be the upgrade the Spurs need to once again be a tough out in the playoffs.

Report: Details emerge about the Morris-Rich Paul split>>>

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Report: Details emerge about Marcus Morris and Rich Paul's split

Report: Details emerge about Marcus Morris and Rich Paul's split

Marcus Morris officially signed with the New York Knicks earlier this week on a one-year, $15 million deal. This ended a rocky free-agent process for the former Boston Celtics forward, and one that left some carnage in its wake.

Morris had reportedly agreed to a two-year deal worth $20 million to join the San Antonio Spurs. However, he backed out of that agreement to join the Knicks on the shorter-term contract worth more in average annual value. After that, Morris and his agent, Rich Paul, parted ways.

And according to Marc Berman of The New York Post, the reason that Paul and Morris are on the outs is due to Morris' decision to renege his verbal agreement with the Spurs.

Morris’ super-agent, Rich Paul, was not involved directly in Morris breaking his verbal agreement with the Spurs, according to a source, and the Knicks and Morris worked on a new deal together. The source reports Paul preferred Morris stick to his original agreement and the two are headed toward a breakup over the incident.

It's understandable why Paul would be a bit frustrated with this development, as the Spurs had to orchestrate a sign-and-trade of sharpshooting stretch four, Davis Bertans, to fit Morris onto their roster. But with Morris deciding to sign elsewhere, the Spurs essentially gave up a young asset for nothing. Had Paul stayed with Morris, that could have damaged his reputation with the Spurs, so he apparently chose to distance himself from Morris' decision instead.

Of course, it's also worth noting that Morris reportedly had a $41 million contract on the table from the Los Angeles Clippers that he didn't end up accepting. It's unclear why he chose not to sign there, but it's yet another intriguing footnote in Morris' summer. The Clippers would move on from Morris to add Moe Harkless in a trade before landing both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.

With the dust settled, it looks like Morris won't have Paul in his corner anymore. But he will be with the Knicks and will have plenty of chances to suit up against the Celtics in the 2019-20 campaign.

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