Breaking: Key Nuggets Championship Piece Declines Option, Hits Free Agency

At the Denver Nuggets' championship parade, one player who stood out for their comments at the podium was guard/forward Bruce Brown, who played a huge role in the team's title run. He asked fans if he should come back from one more year. 

For that to happen now, the Nuggets might have to negotiate for Brown's services against the rest of the league, as he's opted out of his $6.8M contract. 

This decision was expected, as Brown far outplayed his contract and is in for a big raise from the $6.4M he made this past season.  It's the best move for him in order to maximize his pay going forward.

As Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer notes, if Brown simply re-signs with Denver for the most they can offer him right now, $7.8M, he'd be eligible next summer to an extension worth four years, $55M. That's about equal to the non-taxpayer mid-level exception of $12.2M AAV. If rival teams won't be blowing him away with far more than the MLE, then it makes sense for Brown to stay with the Nuggets under this scenario.

“I want to stay. Money is not everything," Brown said after the playoffs.

And then, of course, there's his coach, Mike Malone, who's become legendary for his championship parade antics. He definitely wants Brown to stay: