Free Agency: Griz Decline Qualifying Offers on Leuer/Daye, Meet with Tony Allen

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Austin Daye
A Grizzlies source confirmed today at the team has declined to extend qualifying offers to free agents Austin Daye and Jon Leuer, making both unrestricted free agents.

Daye's qualifying offer was $4.1 million, well above his market value, so not extending to him was a foregone conclusion. Leuer's qualifying offer was $1.1 million and his situation was more up in the air.

The Grizzlies lose matching rights to both Daye and Leuer in free agency but are not precluded from negotiating deals outside of the framework of each player's prior contract. With Leuer, there's a good chance the team may try to reach agreement on a multi-year deal with team options that would start a little below Leuer's qualifying offer for next season, helping the team navigate beneath the league's luxury tax line. As for Daye, the Grizzlies could still sign him to a lower salary if there's roster and payroll space left after the smoke clears on higher-priority free agent targets.

With free agency negotiation beginning today, team CEO Jason Levien and head coach Dave Joerger met with incumbent free agent Tony Allen this morning. Other teams with reported interest in Allen include the Clippers, Bucks, Pacers, and Knicks.

It's unclear at the moment which outside free agents the Grizzlies will target, but other outlets have reported interest in swingmen Chase Budinger and Kevin Martin and re-confirmed interest in center Greg Oden.

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