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Reports: Green remains with Golden State as NBA free agency commences

Draymond Green stays with Golden State, Bruce Brown joins Indiana.

In the opening stages of NBA free agency, it has been reported that four-time champion Draymond Green will remain with the Golden State Warriors, while the reigning NBA champion Denver Nuggets have lost guard Bruce Brown to the Indiana Pacers.

According to ESPN and The Athletic, Brown has agreed to a lucrative two-year deal worth $45 million with the Pacers. On the other hand, the Warriors have secured Green on a four-year deal worth a whopping $100 million.

Just before the commencement of the free agency negotiating period, the NBA made an announcement regarding the salary cap for the 2023-24 season. The cap will stand at $136.021 million per club, with a minimum payroll requirement of $122.418 million. Additionally, the salary tax will begin at $165.294 million.

It is important to note that free agency talks were strictly off-limits until Friday, in accordance with NBA rules. The signing of new deals was also prohibited until Thursday, leaving media reports as the only source of information regarding the moves made by NBA teams for the upcoming season.

Brown, 26, had an impressive performance for the Nuggets during their championship run, averaging a career-best 11.5 points per game while playing an average of 28.5 minutes per game.

Green, a 33-year-old forward, decided to opt out of his previous deal. However, it was clear that the Warriors were keen on retaining the services of the reliable rebounder and defender. The reported deal will see Green earn $22.3 million next year, providing the Warriors with significant savings in terms of salary tax.

In other notable free agency news, Kyrie Irving, an eight-time All-Star guard, has agreed to a three-year deal worth $126 million to remain with the Dallas Mavericks. Meanwhile, the Portland Trail Blazers, who are still uncertain about the future of star player Damian Lillard, have secured forward Jerami Grant on a lucrative five-year deal worth $160 million, as reported by ESPN and The Athletic.

Furthermore, Kyle Kuzma has agreed to re-sign with the Washington Wizards for $102 million over four years. Guard Coby White will stay with the Chicago Bulls on a three-year deal worth $40 million, and guard Caris LeVert is set to remain with the Cleveland Cavaliers on a two-year deal worth $32 million. These deals were also reported by ESPN and The Athletic.

In the case of Philadelphia 76ers' All-Star guard James Harden, he has chosen to opt into his $35.6 million contract for the upcoming season. However, reports suggest that this decision was made to facilitate a potential trade deal. Harden, a former NBA Most Valuable Player and three-time scoring champion, could find himself playing for his fourth team in as many seasons. He was traded from the Houston Rockets to the Brooklyn Nets in 2021 and then dealt to the 76ers in 2022. The Los Angeles Clippers and New York Knicks are reportedly interested in acquiring Harden.

The outcome of any potential trade involving Harden is crucial for the 76ers, as they aim to provide reigning NBA Most Valuable Player Joel Embiid with the necessary support to make a title run in Philadelphia. ESPN has reported that the 76ers will not offer Tyrese Maxey a contract extension this summer, as they hope to maintain extra salary cap space for 2024 and keep Maxey in an important role.

The Milwaukee Bucks, the reigning NBA champions, face the challenge of retaining two key free agents, Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez. The ability to keep these players could prove vital in retaining the services of Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Greek superstar center who could become a free agent in 2025. Despite finishing the previous season with the best record in the NBA, the Bucks were eliminated by the Miami Heat in the first round of the playoffs.

Lastly, Fred VanVleet, a 29-year-old point guard who played a crucial role in helping the Toronto Raptors win the 2019 NBA championship, is expected to attract significant interest from the Houston Rockets. The Rockets have ample salary cap space to invest in talent and are likely to pursue VanVleet aggressively.

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