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NBA Rumors: Jrue Holiday leaving New Orleans Pelicans, wants ‘fresh start’; Four teams interested

PHOTOGRAPH: Keith Allison/Flickr | Jrue Holiday

The New Orleans Pelicans revealed that they will prioritize re-signing guard Jrue Holiday in the upcoming offseason. However, Holiday is not yet committed to returning to New Orleans and will consider entertaining other offers in free agency.

The Pelicans failed to enter the Western Conference playoffs despite successfully upgrading their roster before the trade deadline. DeMarcus Cousins struggled to make himself fit in New Orleans playing alongside Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday. However, the Pelicans remain optimistic that their “Big Three” can build a good chemistry next season.

Re-signing Jrue Holiday as Pelicans No. 1 priority this summer

To prove their claim, the Pelicans should first prioritize bring Jrue Holiday back. Holiday will become an unrestricted free agent this summer. Pelicans general manager Dell Demps expressed his intention to immediately re-sign the 26-year-old point guard in free agency.

“We love Jrue, we love his family. Obviously, we’d like to have him back,” team general manager Dell Demps said. “He’s got a tough decision to make. We’re going to let that process play out. He’s one of my favorite players. He’s a two-way player and a phenomenal person. We really enjoy having him here.”

Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry also shared the same sentiment, saying that re-signing Holiday will be their No.1 priority. However, the Pelicans aren’t the only team who will make an offer to Holiday in the upcoming free agency. Aside from New Orleans, the New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers, Denver Nuggets, and the Dallas Mavericks are reportedly interested in acquiring Holiday this summer.

NBA Rumors: Jrue Holiday wants a fresh start?

According to Fletcher Mackel of WDSU.com, Holiday is expected to demand $20-$22 million annually which could be $100 million-110 million over five years. The Pelicans may have the money to bring him back but Holiday plans to explore all options this summer.

“Sources tell me New Orleans’ leadership has remained in contact with Holiday and his representatives regarding a long-term contract extension,” Mackel wrote. “In a perfect world, Holiday would ink a new deal with the Pelicans as soon as NBA free agency starts in July. But the basketball world is unfortunately not perfect. I’m told Holiday and his camp fully intends to test the free agent market and want to take their time exploring all options – which has the powers that be at the Pelicans headquarters unhappy.”

Mackel believes that Holiday is bolting with Big Easy. The UCLA product reportedly wants a “fresh start” and doesn’t want to lock himself to a team whose still far from becoming a legitimate title contender. However, the Pelicans will surely do everything to convince to re-sign as they aim to return to the playoffs next season.

Photo courtesy: Keith Allison/Flickr

Video courtesy: Youtube/FreeDawkins

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