About a month after I posed the original question, ESPN released it's top 30 Free Agents for this coming offseason ranked by their Average Annual Value, or AAV. Amin Elhassan did an excellent job on the writeup and explains the system as what he feels the players deserve under the new CBA. He uses the same formula he once used when he was in the Phoenix Suns' front office, basing the value off of "age, injury history, value of recent comparable contracts, irreplaceability of skill set, contribution to winning, history of production, fit with style and culture, marketability and current cap situation, among other things." He projects $20 million plus for Dwight Howard and CP3, about $14 million for Josh Smith, $13 million for Andre Iguodala and Andrew Bynum, among others.
At number 19 on the list,
surprisingly in front of Monta Ellis, is Tony "Trick or Treat" Allen. Here is what Mr. Elhassan has to say on the Doctor of Grindonomics...
Allen has been a vastly undervalued player over the last few years as the poster child for impacting games in ways that aren't measurable by the traditional box score. Although he offers little on the offensive end, Allen's defense is nothing short of elite. I'd pay Allen up to $24 million over four years (admittedly, much of that is acknowledgment for his playing underpaid the last few years), but I would only partially guarantee the last two years for $1 million and $500,000, respectively, to protect against a drop in athleticism that would reduce his defensive ability.
Now, when we talked out this question before, the poll's consensus was about 3 years and 9-15 million dollars. According to Mr. Elhassan, we would be getting a big home-town discount at that price and may risk losing him. He has created the hypest mantra/mentality in the NBA, "Grit and Grind", and lived it out, he is an important part of the culture of Memphis and truly has an irreplaceable skill set. There is no doubt without Tony, we are not the same team that
will kick the crap out of could very well beat the Spurs tonight en route to their 50th win, which is by any measure a very successful season.
So, after this, what do we think, GBB enthusiasts? I personally like the last 2 seasons being partially guaranteed and I think that deal would keep TA in Beale Street Blue while rewarding him for his efforts and his under compensation the past couple seasons.