Despite being over one year from potentially reaching free agency, Anthony Davis is attempting to take control of his future now by demanding a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans. He was eligible for a five-year, $240 million supermax contract extension this summer, which agent Rich Paul relayed will not be signed.
Davis previously put his faith in the Pelicans franchise by signing a five-year extension in July 2015 as opposed to playing out his rookie deal and hitting the open market. Davis’ contract includes an opt-out clause that can be exercised after the 2019-20 season.
Davis’ trade request came during a stretch in which he remains sidelined with a volar plate avulsion fracture of his left index finger. There was concern he would be out until after the All-Star break but hand specialists determined Davis could make a speedy recovery.
He last played Jan. 18, and given the fallout from ongoing trade speculation, the Pelicans are considering it possible that it will mark Davis’ final game with the franchise, per Marc Stein of The New York Times:
It has not been definitively decided that Anthony Davis has played his last game for the Pelicans, according to one source close to the situation. But the source said it is a scenario under consideration in the event New Orleans does not move Davis before next Thursday's deadline
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) January 31, 2019
Although Davis made his desire for a trade clear, the Pelicans aren’t believed to have much motivation in completing a deal before the Feb. 7 deadline. That works against the Los Angeles Lakers, who are among the teams expected to pursue the five-time All-Star.
If Davis is traded prior to this season’s deadline or during the summer, he will have averaged 24.0 points, 10.6 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 2.4 blocks in 451 games (446 starts) over seven seasons with the Pelicans.
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