Sources: Valanciunas expected to return to Grizz

Once free agency opens at 6 p.m. ET, center Jonas Valanciunas is expected to commit to a three-year, $45 million contract to return to the Memphis Grizzlies, league sources tell ESPN.

Valanciunas declined a $17.6 million player option on his 2019-20 contract, clearing the way to become an unrestricted free agent and negotiate a new, longer term deal.

In the post-Marc Gasol era, Valanciunas arrived in Memphis with the franchise focused on him as a long-term solution at center next to talented forward Jaren Jackson Jr.

Valanciunas, 27, had the most productive stretch of his career with the Grizzlies after getting traded from Toronto in February, averaging 19.9 points and 10.7 rebounds in 19 games.

Valanciunas, who’ll be starting his eighth NBA season, has averaged 11.8 points and 8.4 rebounds a game in his career.

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