CLEVELAND: Lester Hudson’s agent thought his client did enough during his first 10 days with the Cavaliers to warrant a guarantee for the rest of the season. The Cavs’ front office disagreed and Hudson is now a member of the Memphis Grizzlies.
Keith Glass, Hudson’s agent, told the Beacon Journal on Friday that Hudson gladly would’ve signed for the rest of the season had the Cavs extended the offer on April 9, when they instead signed him to a second 10-day deal.
When that contract expired on Thursday, Glass and Hudson chose not to re-sign with the Cavaliers. Instead, they signed for the rest of the season with the Grizzlies, Hudson’s hometown team.
“If 10 days ago, they had just done what I thought they should’ve done, which was guarantee the rest of the year, he would’ve signed it and been there,” Glass said. “The way the league works, the way the world works, the word is leverage. I guess they had the leverage 10 days ago and we had some yesterday.”
The Cavaliers did not offer any guaranteed dollars for next season, but neither did the Grizzlies. Instead, the Cavs offered to sign Hudson for the rest of this season and offered him a non-guaranteed deal for next season. It’s similar to the deals signed by Manny Harris and Donald Sloan.
Glass, however, wasn’t interested.
“We just didn’t feel like giving up a year of his freedom for eight days,” Glass said.
Non-guaranteed contracts next season won’t become guaranteed until early January. By ending this season with the Grizzlies, who also didn’t guarantee him any dollars for next season, they will control Hudson’s rights this summer.
In order to make him a restricted free agent, the Grizzlies will have to extend to him a qualifying offer of about $1.1 million for next season. The Cavs weren’t interested in guaranteeing Hudson that much money – and a roster spot – for next season.
Hudson exploded toward the end of his first 10-day contract, but cooled after signing the second 10-day deal. He departs Cleveland shooting 40 percent from the field and 23 percent on 3-pointers.
“No matter where you are, if you’re on the basketball court, you are auditioning not only for us, but for other teams,” Cavs coach Byron Scott said. “Lester played really well for us, did some really good things and obviously got the attention of some other teams in the league. We wanted to re-sign him, but he also was looking at other opportunities and took advantage of that opportunity. I just wish him all the best.”