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Report: Suns may offer a max contract to Gordon Hayward, but Jazz plan on matching

Jun 30, 2014, 12:01 AM EDT

Gordon Hayward AP

Gordon Hayward is one of the very enticing second tier free agents on the market this summer, though his restricted status means that the Jazz can (and likely will) match any offer he may receive.

Nevertheless, teams will come calling to force Utah’s hand in that regard, and the Phoenix Suns, who are loaded with cap space and are looking to add some proven star-level talent to a team that won 47 games last season, may be first in line.

From Jody Genessy of the Deseret News:

The 6-foot-8 restricted free agent is expected to receive a significant contract offer, possibly upwards to a max deal, from the Phoenix Suns this coming week, according to sources.

Boston and Charlotte are two other teams whom the Jazz are expecting to throw large offers at Hayward.

However, the Jazz plan on matching any offers for Hayward and intend to keep the versatile wing player in the organization as a major cornerstone in this rebuilding era, according to sources.

Suns head coach Jeff Hornacek was an assistant coach in Utah for Hayward’s first three seasons, so that connection, along with Hayward’s productivity, makes him an intriguing prospect for Phoenix to pursue.

All of this is moot, of course, should Utah stick to its word and match any offer Hayward may receive. But a team like Phoenix can, if nothing else, force the Jazz to overpay a bit to retain their star player.

  1. 00maltliquor - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:24 AM

    It would suck if Utah lost him, but I think he would fit in quite nicely in PHX.

    CHA too, even BOS just to reunite with Brad Stevens. Should be Interesting.

    • bparmalee - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:36 AM

      Gordon Hayward is in NO way a max player. Crazy.

      • nykfanwakemeupin2015 - Jun 30, 2014 at 10:02 AM

        This is when owners need to let players walk. He is GOOD player but max money is ridiculous. You are better off sucking for the year getting a good draft pick then paying for mediocrity……

  2. sportsfan18 - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:25 AM

    The owners are nuts.

    Part of the last strike/lockout was to protect the owners from themselves…

    Have a really stupid deal? Oh yes said EVERY owner… well we’ll amnesty one…

    Then, we watched as many dumb OWNER butchered their get out of free jail card by not amnestying the right player…

    Reduced the BRI (basketball related income) going to the players from 57% to 50% and this was HUGE…

    idiot players will NEVER see that money again…

    I’m a middle aged white male who was born and raised in Indiana.

    I really LIKE Gordon Hayward and I root for him.

    But he ins’t worth a max contract.

    The definition of insanity is in play here folks…

    The owners keep doing the same things… over and over…

    • jrob23 - Jun 30, 2014 at 1:10 AM

      it’s pronounced…Gord-Dawn.

      but seriously, this is maddening. He is a nice player and could be a great number three for a BIG three type lineup..but if you pay him max you can’t get the more important Big Two. These types of deals are what make certain clueless franchises irrelevant.

    • antistratfordian - Jun 30, 2014 at 2:19 AM

      Calm down. No one said he was getting a max deal. Jody only said, “…expected to receive a significant contract offer, possibly upwards to a max deal.” Save your outrage for when something outrageous actually happens.

    • bparmalee - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:37 AM


  3. campcouch - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:38 AM

    Cold truth. Looks like white players are finally getting their due again. Hayward,Love,Parsons all coveted and primed for a nice paycheck. A lot of players have the same skillsets and talent as black players but have been overlooked for years.

    And no,I’m not an angry white guy,I’m a happy black guy. I just see what I see.

    • kinggw - Jun 30, 2014 at 2:08 AM

      What white players have been overlooked? Your comment implies that white players have been undervalued because they’re not black and that’s ridiculous.

      You could make an argument that the athleticism of white players may be overlooked, but I think that is the only part of their game that is undervalued.

      Guys like Ridnour, Collison, Hinrich, and Dunleavy wouldn’t have careers that lasted a decade plus if they were overlooked. Guys like Luke Jackson, Adam Morrison and more recently Jimmer Fredette wouldn’t be lottery picks if they were overlooked. NBA gms don’t care what color you are. If you can play, they’ll find you.

      • campcouch - Jun 30, 2014 at 3:26 AM

        Not at all. What I’m saying that a player with the identical skills and talent that isn’t white would be looked at with a greater upside. It’s a bias. Those guys get paid and nobody blinks. Ridnour,Collinson,Hinrich and Dunleavy are slotted as role players,that’s how they get used and paid as. Luke Jackson,Adam Morrison and Fredette weren’t given the same leeway to fail nor were they invested in as heavily. Even now Fredette has been shipped from a team that made no effort to develop or use him,and they chose Isaiah Thomas instead,a player that they’re now considering letting go. Even this year’s draft, a scoring machine like Doug McDermott is slotted to fit a role like Kyle Korver in Chicago,Nik Stauskas is being questioned because they have McLemore. Not even a consideration that he could take his spot. So yes, I do think they are overlooked,underappreciated and undervalued.

    • hojo20 - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:33 AM

      Dude, I’m white and I think a max contract would be nuts!!!

  4. yesser12 - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:58 AM

    Anyone can get a max contract I guess. Hayward is nice but no way is he near a max guy.

  5. cmart0907 - Jun 30, 2014 at 1:01 AM

    I rather develop T.J Warren at the three this year. Gordon is a 10-12 million dollar guy in my eyes. That’s just my opinion. Max players have the ability to take THEIR team over the hump. I don’t think Gordon has proved he can do that from his time in the league.

  6. kb2408 - Jun 30, 2014 at 1:12 AM

    16, 5, and 5 equals a max contract, huh? I guess if Utah feels he’s worthy of a max deal, who am I to say he’s not.

  7. kingperk123 - Jun 30, 2014 at 1:13 AM

    Boston has to go hard. But i think he is only worth 11mill they missed out on asik

  8. timb12 - Jun 30, 2014 at 1:21 AM

    I don’t know how you would regulate this kind of stuff. Robin Lopez has a max deal too right? It’s a domino effect. All it takes is one subpar player A to get a max deal, then if player B has a better year he can demand the max, and so on. Eventually over half the league will be max guys.

  9. drunkenjunk - Jun 30, 2014 at 2:07 AM

    Wow…. I can’t believe there are two teams willing to give this guy that kind of money. I like Hayward and think he’s a really nice player but this is crazy. He’s worth 12-14 million at the most.

  10. joegalvan02 - Jun 30, 2014 at 3:08 AM

    worth noting that Hayward is coming off his rookie deal, which means he’s only eligible for the ‘mini-max’…. still a lot of money, but a little more reasonable.

    could probably use derrick favors (4-$47m) or larry sanders (4-$44m) recent extensions as decent comps.

    people see the market for 30yo Deng being around $12m. i honestly dont think hayward is too far behind that.

  11. sumkat - Jun 30, 2014 at 4:19 AM

    I like Hayward. A lot. But he is not a max player. Giving guys like him max dollar are the kind of decisions that keep teams mediocre at best.

    He should get a raise, a big raise,but not the max

  12. rrhoe - Jun 30, 2014 at 6:47 AM

    I wonder do the Suns do this just to cripple a franchise,did the same with Eric Gordon and NO been stuck ever since,which they should be glad NO matched.

  13. ravenswhat - Jun 30, 2014 at 7:00 AM

    There’s no way on earth this guy is a max deal player. Unreal.

  14. spyder9669 - Jun 30, 2014 at 7:39 AM

    pretty sure a max deal for him is only about 54 mill for 4 years. hes not eligible for the full max so calm down people.

    • money2long - Jun 30, 2014 at 9:16 AM

      Good comment.

    • chiadam - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:09 PM

      And that’s still too much.

  15. bruiserbrigade - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:19 AM

    In a hypothetical sign and trade, what would you Jazz fans want from the Suns that isn’t Bledsoe, Dragic, or Goodwin?

  16. kevindoc593 - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:49 AM

    4 8 15 16 23 42

    Game Over

  17. saint1997 - Jun 30, 2014 at 9:23 AM

    I never understood this – if a RFA wants to leave so bad why don’t they just wait one year? I understand the injury risk but even still

  18. clevelandrox - Jun 30, 2014 at 10:58 AM

    gordon is not a max player on good teams, but teams that have problems getting top tier free agents (like my cavs) he would definetly be worth it!

  19. chicago240 - Jun 30, 2014 at 11:40 AM

    There may be grumblings about a max deal possibility. More likely, it’s GM positioning.

    Utah – “We’ll match any contract out there.”

    Decision Point by others – 1) Why bother offering or 2) I guess I’ll have to bid high to force Utah’s hand but what if they’re bluffing and I get stuck with a bad contract.

    Gamesmanship. Cat and Mouse. Anyone with half a brain knows he’s nowhere near a max contract.

  20. chiadam - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:08 PM

    Sooooo, why exactly did the owners have a lockout again?

  21. spyder9669 - Jun 30, 2014 at 6:54 PM

    Heyward is a smart player with talent. Coaches like that. He can actually make a team better at all times. Every team in the league would take him over Josh Smith and look how much he makes! Heyward is easily worth 12 mill a year.

  22. muhangis - Jul 1, 2014 at 1:59 AM

    Hayward as unwittingly mentioned is a deeply overrated player! The most overrated player in the NBA and worth not close to the low end of a max K. His real current deserved value is about $9 M.

    Some claim his is efficient. So how does shooting .413, w/ his higher than avg. turnover rate, poor D, and his high # of minutes (36.5 mpg)- for an SF – result into “efficiency” is beyond me?!

    And if Hayward is as so good as he’s touted in NBA front offices, then why – for a player entering in his prime age – the Jazz are a bottom NBA team when they had plentiful of good young talent around him !?

    ….. for Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, Marvin Williams, Alec Burks, and Trey Burke are no slouches. (Okay well maybe Marvin is a bit of a slouch, but still..)

    And don’t forget having Al Jefferson, Mo, and Millsap the year before. IF Gordon Hayward were soo darn good as claimed, then that ’12-’13 team SURELY would have been a *playoff level team. But were not.

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