The movitation of looming negotiations for a new contract can drive players to put a little extra into a season. Even guys who aren't in the final years of their deals may have a financial carrot on a stick, with team and player options and non-guaranteed seasons to be decided on for 2014/15. Former first-round draft picks entering their third seasons can look forward to the prospect of a lucrative extension.
Still, there are plenty of others who have no direct financial incentive to play well in 2013/14. They have contracts that include a fully guaranteed season in 2014/15, with no options to be decided upon next summer. No teams have more players in this situation than the Bucks, Nuggets, Timberwolves, and Trail Blazers, all of which hope eight of their guys can find something else to drive them. The Heat have the specter of a third straight championship to shoot for, but everyone on the team will be playing for a contract, too, since they're the only NBA franchise without anyone locked into his 2014/15 salary.
This compilation doesn't take into effect players who are up for veteran extensions, since those are rare under the new collective bargaining agreement. Over time, the latest CBA should curtail the number of players without a negotiation ahead, since it places stricter limits on the length of deals.
Everyone who signed a long-term, fully guaranteed free agent contract this summer is on the list. It also includes John Wall and Larry Sanders, who signed long-term rookie-scale extensions. There are a few of this year's second-round picks shown here, but none of the first-rounders, since they must sign rookie-scale contracts which call for either an option decision or an extension candidacy in each of the three offseasons between the four years of the deal. Since many guys on rookie-scale deals sign extensions, unlike other NBA players, we've included those who are set for rookie-scale extension eligibility in 2014.
Of course, just because a player doesn't have a tangible financial incentive to play for doesn't mean there isn't some money at stake. A player's off-court endorsement earnings are often affected by his play, and if a guy lollygags this season, only to ramp up his production when negotiations draw closer, front offices might not be fooled. Teams can get rid of them by trading them or waiving them, but these players will still be due their 2014/15 salaries:
- 76ers (1): Thaddeus Young
- Bobcats (3): Al Jefferson, Gerald Henderson, Brendan Haywood
- Bucks (8): O.J. Mayo, Ersan Ilyasova, Zaza Pachulia, Carlos Delfino, Gary Neal, Larry Sanders, Miroslav Raduljica, Nate Wolters
- Bulls (6): Derrick Rose, Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson, Mike Dunleavy, Tony Snell
- Cavaliers (2): Jarrett Jack, Carrick Felix
- Celtics (6): Rajon Rondo, Gerald Wallace, Jeff Green, Brandon Bass, Courtney Lee, Vitor Faverani
- Clippers (6): Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan, J.J. Redick, Jared Dudley, Matt Barnes
- Grizzlies (6): Marc Gasol, Mike Conley, Tayshaun Prince, Tony Allen, Jon Leuer, Jamaal Franklin
- Hawks (6): Al Horford, Paul Millsap, Jeff Teague, Kyle Korver, Lou Williams, DeMarre Carroll
- Heat: None
- Jazz (1): Jeremy Evans
- Kings (7): Marcus Thornton, Carl Landry, Chuck Hayes, Jason Thompson, Luc Mbah A Moute, Travis Outlaw, Ray McCallum
- Knicks (4): Tyson Chandler, J.R. Smith, Raymond Felton, Pablo Prigioni
- Lakers (2): Steve Nash, Robert Sacre
- Magic (2): Arron Afflalo, Glen Davis
- Mavericks (6): Monta Ellis, Jose Calderon, Brandan Wright, Wayne Ellington, Ricky Ledo, Gal Mekel
- Nets (7): Joe Johnson, Deron Williams, Brook Lopez, Kevin Garnett, Jason Terry, Mirza Teletovic, Reggie Evans
- Nuggets (8): Ty Lawson, JaVale McGee, Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, J.J. Hickson, Timofey Mozgov, Randy Foye, Anthony Randolph
- Pacers (7): Roy Hibbert, David West, George Hill, Ian Mahinmi, Chris Copeland, C.J. Watson, Donald Sloan
- Pelicans (4): Eric Gordon, Tyreke Evans, Jrue Holiday, Ryan Anderson
- Pistons (6): Josh Smith, Brandon Jennings, Will Bynum, Luigi Datome, Kyle Singler, Tony Mitchell
- Raptors (3): DeMar DeRozan, Landry Fields, Steve Novak,
- Rockets (5): Dwight Howard, James Harden, Omer Asik, Jeremy Lin, Isaiah Canaan
- Spurs (5): Tiago Splitter, Manu Ginobili, Danny Green, Marco Belinelli, Jeff Ayres
- Suns (2): Goran Dragic, Gerald Green
- Thunder (5): Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins, Nick Collison
- Timberwolves (8): Kevin Love, Nikola Pekovic, Kevin Martin, Chase Budinger, J.J. Barea, Corey Brewer, Alexey Shved, Ronny Turiaf
- Trail Blazers (8): LaMarcus Aldridge, Nicolas Batum, Wesley Matthews, Robin Lopez, Dorell Wright, Joel Freeland, Victor Claver, Allen Crabbe
- Warriors (4): David Lee, Andre Iguodala, Stephen Curry, Marreese Speights,
- Wizards (3): Nene, John Wall, Martell Webster
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