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Nets decline to submit a tender offer to Isaia Cordinier, making him unrestricted free agent

2019 Las Vegas Summer League - Brooklyn Nets v Minnesota Timberwolves Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images

The guessing game over Isaia Cordinier’s future with the Nets is over. Brooklyn declined to submit a tender offer for the 6’5” Frenchman’s draft rights, making him an unrestricted free agent in the NBA.

Nets fans have had fun the last few weeks, finding clues on the Internet that the 24-year-old was working out at the HSS Training Center or that he had his hair styled in Manhattan on Saturday, perhaps in preparation for Media Day? But in the end, the Nets roster was too full, as Adrian Wojnarowski reported Sunday...

The move appears to be a favor to Cordinier, permitting him to find another team where he’d get more minutes, more money than he would with Brooklyn.

Every September, teams are required to submit tender offers — essentially an expression of interest — to each of their draft stashes in order to retain their draft rights. It’s normally a perfunctory move that doesn’t even get reported. Unless a stashed player has a chance to make an NBA team, the primary value of such draft rights is to facilitate trades. Last month, for example, the Nets acquired the rights to Serbian center Nikola Milutinov in the five-team trade that sent Spencer Dinwiddie to the Washington Wizards in a sign-and-trade.

By not submitting the tender offer, the Nets have let Cordinier, who was All-EuroCup this season, find another NBA team ... or return to Europe where he had multiple offers from top teams on the continent.

Cordinier had indeed been working out in Brooklyn, but even if the Nets had signed him to an Exhibit 10 training camp deal permitting him to compete for a two-way contract, he would have gotten few opportunities to play ... and have made far less money than he would in Europe or on an NBA vets minimum ... if that transpires.

Drafted by the Atlanta Hawks with the 44th pick in 2016, Cordinier played summer league with Atlanta that year, then returned to France. The Nets sought and acquired his rights in the 2018 trade that sent Jeremy Lin to the Hawks. He played for the Nets in the 2018 Summer League, then underwent surgery on both knees to correct chronic tendinitis. After surgery and a long rehab, Cordinier re-established himself as a star in the French League, first with Antibes, then with Nanterre. The Nets liked his development and brought him over for an extended workout.

They still have one training camp invitation open after signing Devontae Cacok and declining to submit a tender offer to Cordinier. The team now has 16 players on standard NBA deals, one of which, DeAndre’ Bembry, is only partially guaranteed, as well as one two-way, Kessler Edwards, and two Exhibit 10 contracts, Cacok and David Duke Jr. Cacok, Duke and whoever the Nets may sign to a third Exhibit 10 in the next week will compete for the second two-way.

Brooklyn now holds draft rights to four European players, but only of whom, Milutinov, is seen as a legitimate NBA prospect.