Ben Gordon exercises player option of $13.2 million to return to Bobcats

Streeter Lecka

Well, duh.

Bobcats shooting guard Ben Gordon has accepted to return to the team after exercising his hefty player option, Ken Berger of CBS Sports reports.

The one-year option worth $13.2 million removes Gordon's name from the list of possible free agents this year, and he will instead become a free agent the following offseason.

Gordon's stint in Charlotte has been fairly rocky for all sides. Brought in from Detroit in a trade that shipped out Corey Maggette for the 9-year veteran and a first round pick, Gordon had the tools to become Charlotte's biggest scoring threat because of his shooting.

However, he performed worse than ever before notching career worsts across the board.

Despite playing under 21 minutes per game, which is the lowest of his NBA career, he had a season with his third-most field goals attempted per 36 minutes with the added bonus of his worst field goal percentage! His three-point percentage and free-throw shooting were each at their second-worst levels he's seen.

As if his on-the-court troubles weren't bad enough, he had an incident with then-coach Mike Dunlap, in which Gordon implored Dunlap to "humble himself." A source for Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski said the situation was "beyond disrespectful."

The Bobcats then tried more aggressively to trade Gordon, but with no results. There was chatter of trading him to the Nets for Kris Humphries but Brooklyn didn't bite.

As the team stands now with Gordon's option, Zeller's prospective rookie scale contract of about $3.2 million and Gerald Henderson's qualifying offer, the total team salary for next year would be around $48 million. If the salary cap remains the same at $58.044 million, the minimum total salary for any team will rise to about $52.2 million as the new CBA dictates the salary floor will rise from 85 percent of the cap to 90 percent of the cap.

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