Gerald Wallace Opts Out; Agent Says He "Loves New York"

Mar 28, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; New Jersey Nets small forward Gerald Wallace (45) brings the ball up court during the first half against the Indiana Pacers at the Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Jim O'Connor-US PRESSWIRE

Gerald Wallace has decided not to opt into the final year of his contract, making him an unrestricted free agent on July 1. The Nets had hoped to persuade Wallace to extend his contract with the Nets through 2014-15 at $30.4 million.

The Nets remain confident of re-signing Wallace, likely at a similiar rate, reports Fred Kerber. He adds the Nets were prepared for yesterday’s opt-out deadline decision.

Rob Pelinka, Wallace's agent, told one sports site that while he was opting out, "This doesn't mean Gerald won't be here next year, we will explore all our options, Gerald loves NY." Wallace himself said similar things during and at the end of the season.

The Nets retain Wallace's Bird Rights, meaning they can offer him more money than anyone else, as well as a fifth year on a new deal. They would like to get his agreement on a new contract as soon as possible after July 1, because he has a large cap hold until he signs (which can't officially happen until July 11).

Jordan Farmar and Deron Williams also have player options (with June 30 deadlines) for next season. Williams, of course, has said he will opt out. Farmar has said nothing definitive. Brook Lopez is a restricted free agent. Otherwise, the Nets have just four players under contract: Marshon Brooks, Anthony Morrow, Johan Petro and Jordan Williams.

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