Over the past four seasons, 28-year-old guard Austin Rivers has become one of the better backup point guards in the league, averaging 10.8 points and 2.6 rebounds while playing for the Los Angeles Clippers and Houston Rockets.
Now, in the prime of his career, Rivers could be looking to sign his first lucrative contract since signing a three-year, $35.5 million deal with the Doc Rivers-led Clippers in 2016.
Making an appearance on The Ringer’s Real Ones podcast, Rivers revealed his plans for the 2020 offseason, saying that “you owe it to yourself to at least see the best situation” when discussing free agency.
That’s something I’m going through right now with my agent. I definitely want to… probably be out there on the market and just see what else is out there. But I love Houston; Houston’s still one of my main options. That’s a team I loved playing for. But there’s other teams out there that you want to look at.
Rivers signed a minimum deal with the Rockets in 2018 after a brief but underwhelming stint with the Washington Wizards. That said, Rivers can afford to take the risk of opting out because any team that signs him will be able to pay him at least what Houston was.
In addition, with all the hubbub in Houston right now (a byproduct of Daryl Morey and Mike D’Antoni’s departures), there’s also no clear sign how the Rockets will look in the future.
The Rockets still have two Hall of Fame talents in James Harden and Russell Westbrook. However, there’s no doubt that could be a better opportunity for Rivers, both individually and in terms of the team’s competitiveness.