Lost in the midst of the pregame yesterday was a interesting little nugget Peter May of ESPNBoston unearthed about the impending status of Jeff Green. The C’s had presented Green with a qualifying offer back in May, but after voiding his one-year nine-million dollar contract before the season began, the C’s withdrew their qualifying offer as well. The move, on the surface, appears to be a kind gesture for Green, who undergoes heart surgery this Monday January 9th at the Cleveland Clinic. Here’s more from May:
Asked about the decision on Friday, Celtics general manager Danny Ainge, citing Green’s impending surgery, said he preferred not to discuss the matter. He did confirm it, however. It may have been nothing more than a goodwill gesture on the part of the Celtics to Green and his agent, David Falk, who said the team has been “phenomenal” in handling the situation.
“It was not something we expected or bargained for, but coming as it did after such devastating medical news it was almost like an early Christmas present,” Falk said.
The move, while an overall nice gesture, will likely have little bearing on Green’s future with the team. Coming off a heart ailment, the market for Green next season will be thin at best, and the C’s still have bird rights on the guy, making them capable of paying him whatever they see fit.
One may assume Green’s reps will give the C’s the right to match or exceed any offer Green ends up recieving on the open market, while also having the chance to expand Jeff’s market a bit by removing the restricted tag. Anything beyond a one-year deal is unlikely as is, but teams may be willing to throw a little more money at Green, if they aren’t forced to wait for the C’s to decide to match the offer.
In addition, the move also takes Green’s qualify offer cap hold (roughly 6 million dollars) off the books. With the C’s future uncertain at best at this point, having minimal money tied in the cap next season helps keep all options open for Danny Ainge in pursuing free agents. Flexibility is crucial for Ainge and this provides more of it for him, while also making Green happy, in case the sides decide to reunite after this season.