Will Barton Declines Player Option, Becomes Free Agent

Will Barton has been a key piece of the Denver Nuggets’ success over the past seven seasons. Known for being a spark plug off the bench, or even a quality starter, he’s one of the more important pieces on the team. 

With that in mind, Barton has declined his $14.7 million player option for the 2021-2022 season and will become a free agent, as first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. There’s a strong interest between the organization and Barton to negotiate a new deal once free agency opens in August, but he will need a new deal from the Nuggets if he’s going to be part of the team going forward. 

President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly is highly focused on re-signing Barton long-term, who’s the longest tenured member of the team at this point. 

Barton started 52 of the 56 games he played in last season, averaging 12.7 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.2 assists per contest. Although he missed a few weeks at the start of the postseason, his final game of the season was against the Phoenix Suns in the second round, where he scored 25 points.