The Orlando Magic are among several teams who may ink Golden State Warriors forward Reggie Williams to an offer sheet when NBA teams can officially sign players to contracts, reports Marcus Thompson of the Contra Costa Times. Citing a league source, Williams expects to receive "two offer sheets right off the bat," with suitors including Orlando, the Charlotte Bobcats, Chicago Bulls, Denver Nuggets, and San Antonio Spurs.
Williams' value is easy to understand. In two seasons since coming up through the Warriors organization, Williams has averaged 10.6 points in 23.2 minutes per game, including 47.7 percent field-goal shooting and 40.5 percent on three-pointers. He'd fit in Orlando particularly well given his youth--he just turned 25--athleticism, three-point range, and the fact that he specializes in offense. Despite swinging for the proverbial fences with trades for Jason Richardson and Gilbert Arenas last December, Orlando's offense did not improve, as it believed it would when it made the trades.
One assumes the Magic could afford to let Richardson leave in free agency if they landed Williams, solidifying a wing rotation of J.J. Redick, Hedo Turkoglu, Quentin Richardson, and Williams, with Arenas sliding to shooting guard when appropriate and if not waived through the amnesty clause in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. Larry Hughes and rookie DeAndre Liggins could enter the mix there as well if the team retains them after training camp.
Once signed to an offer sheet--and Williams can sign only one--his incumbent team, the Warriors, will have three days to match the offer, as Williams is a restricted free agent. If they do, he stays with Golden State under the terms of that offer sheet; if they elect not to match, however, Williams joins the team with which he signed the offer sheet.
As a team over both the salary-cap line and luxury-tax line, the biggest deal the Magic can offer Williams, or any free agent, is the so-called mini mid-level exception, worth up to $9.4 million over three seasons. For comparison, that's the deal Shane Battier will reportedly sign with the Miami Heat, and $2 million more than the one Mike Dunleavy will sign with the Milwaukee Bucks.
The Times' Thompson writes that the Warriors are disinclined to overpay for Williams due to their drafting of swingman Klay Thompson, speculating that Golden State won't match an offer richer than $3 million, "if that much." Further, the Warriors lost C.J. Watson and Anthony Morrow last summer after declining to match offer sheets they signed with the Bulls and New Jersey Nets, respectively.