Monta Ellis tells Bucks he'll become free agent, according to report

Mike Ehrmann

Milwaukee Bucks guard Monta Ellis will opt out of the final year of his contract worth $11 million and could look to team with Dwight Howard.

To hardly anyone's surprise, Milwaukee Bucks guard Monta Ellis will forgo the final year of his contract worth $11 million in search of a longer deal, according to sources of ESPN's Chris Broussard.

By opting out, Ellis becomes an unrestricted free agent, and the Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks and Lakers have interest in adding Ellis to their rosters.

Adding to the rumor mill is Broussard's report of Ellis potentially teaming up with free agent center Dwight Howard, who has said he'll look at his options with the Los Angeles Lakers and elsewhere.

In Milwaukee, it's a matter of what the Bucks and newly-hired coach Larry Drew want to do. Milwaukee is rumored to have interest in either re-signing Ellis or point guard Brandon Jennings, but those reports have flip-flopped. The younger Jennings is a restricted free agent this summer and will likely garner a smaller contract, as Ellis is looking a max deal square in the face.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported a week ago that the Bucks offered Ellis a two-year extension to his contract through 2015-16 if he picked up the player option. Over the course of the three years, it would have paid $36 million.

Ellis led Milwaukee by averaging 19.2 points, 6.0 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game in 2012-13.

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