Tony Allen Free Agency Grinding on Grizz

Tony Allen Free Agency Grinding on Grizz

Memphis Grizzlies fans are hoping the team makes "The Grindfather" an offer he can’t refuse.
MEMPHIS, TN ( - Memphis Grizzlies fans are hoping the team makes "The Grindfather" an offer he can’t refuse.

Tony Allen is the Grizzlies most popular player. He’s also a free agent being courted by several other teams. His contract situation is creating a buzz in Grizz Nation.

NBA free agency officially started on Monday, July 1. Allen is a popular guy because of what he can do on defense, but let’s face it, he is one dimensional.

So, even though he helps the team get victories, most fans seem to be taking a sensible approach on whether he’ll be back in Memphis next year.

"The way fans have reacted so far has been mild," said 560 Sports Radio host David Basham.

That is surprising, considering how upset everybody was when the Grizzlies let Lionel Hollins go.

"I’m surprised at some of the reaction today," Rob Fischer told, "because a lot of people are saying: if the money is too great from another team, the Grizzlies should not go crazy."

Fischer is also a host on the Grizzlies pre-game television broadcasts.

Maybe fans are being calm because they really expect Allen to re-sign with Memphis; but what if he doesn’t?

"I think there would be a lot more animosity at that point," Basham said.

The debate over Allen reaches all the way to city hall.

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton said, "If I were in charge, I would definitely keep Tony."

It seems like Tony wants the same thing.

"My heart is in Memphis," said Allen, "I love the city. We’ll see how it goes."

"I have my fingers crossed they’ll get him," Mayor Wharton said, "I’m confident they will."

Allen certainly talks like he’ll be back, with a little hedging.

"Hopefully we can do something big," said Allen, "well, if I’m coming back."

"I think it’ll be a good offer from the Grizzlies said Fischer."

The consensus seems to be that the salary range for The Grindfather will top out around six million a year.

"If another team is able to offer Tony Allen 7-8 million," said Basham, "that would be hard for the Grizzlies front office to pull the trigger on."

This may be a first, at least when it comes to Tony Allen, nearly all Grizz fans are thinking like city hall.

"He’s a fixture," said Wharton, "lots of loyalty to him."

"What I can say is you are definitely going to get 110% out of me," Allen promised.

That, of course, is what everybody wants to hear.

If the Grizzlies go above six million for Allen then they would have to get creative in filling other holes on the roster, like getting a shooter.

As Fischer said, if somebody ups the bidding to the point it does not make financial sense, then the Grizzlies might have to let Allen go.

Nobody wants to see that.
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