The LA Clippers reportedly want to re-sign both Marcus Morris and Montrezl Harrell when they enter free agency this summer.
In a recent report from Jovan Buha of The Athletic (subscription required), league sources said that the LA Clippers want to re-sign both Marcus Morris and Montrezl Harrell this summer when they enter unrestricted free agency.
With limited cap space heading into the summer, the thought by the front office makes sense. Depending on the level of success this postseason, attempting to retain the same team might also be a no brainer. Both Morris and Harrell figure to be prominent players in the postseason and will be highly sought after.
It makes sense that the Clippers want to bring each back. Trezz has been part of the team’s core for the past few seasons and is now looking like a perennial Sixth Man of the Year contender next to his bench partner Lou Williams.
The Clips also want Morris to stay after they finally acquired him. Morris was coveted by the Clippers since last summer. While they were unable to sign him in the offseason, they were able to snag him at the trade deadline.
What kind of price will they demand? That remains to be seen. Both players are in the midst of career years and contribute in ways that will be coveted by every team. On the year, Montrezl Harrell is putting up 18.6 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.1 blocks per game. Morris scoring well, averaging 18.6 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1.4 assists, and 0.8 steals. Keep in mind, those stats are inflated by him being the top option in New York.
Luckily for the Clippers, not many teams have a lot of money to spend this summer. The team will retain the Bird rights to Harrell meaning they can sign him above the cap. Retaining Marcus Morris will be a bit trickier, likely involving using part of the mid-level exception.
While I’m all on board with bringing both back, the team can still overpay. Even though they can technically give Trezz what he wants, Steve Ballmer may end up being wary of the luxury tax. Yes, even billionaires worry about spending too much money. Trezz has been great the past couple of seasons but has not shown a ton of growth in his game and is an undersized center.
There’s also the fact that the following summer of 2021 will see both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George entering free agency. It’s fair to assume the Clippers will want both players back so paying too much now for role players could put the team very far into the tax when they (hopefully) re-sign their two superstars.
While free agency is still a ways away, this news is important to keep an eye on. Both players will continue to do their best as they look to earn both a championship and new deals.