THURSDAY, 3:43pm: Vucevic has signed the extension and the deal is official, the team has announced.
7:11pm: The base salary of the deal is for $48MM with incentives that could push it to $53MM, according to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today (via Twitter).
TUESDAY, 6:21pm: The Magic are finalizing a four-year, $53MM contract extension with Nikola Vucevic, reports Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel. The year-by-year salary breakdown is the only detail still up in the air, according to Robbins (via Twitter). The pact does not include any opt out clauses and will thus keep him in Orlando through the 2018/19 season. The 23-year-old Montenegrin is a former first round pick entering his fourth season in the NBA, which gave the Magic until October 31 to come to an agreement that would prevent him from becoming a restricted free agent next summer. Vucevic is scheduled to make $2.751MM this season in the final year of his rookie deal.
Vucevic exploded in 2012/13 after coming over from Philadelphia in the Dwight Howard blockbuster. He averaged 13.1 points and 11.9 rebounds per game in his sophomore season, making him the league’s second leading rebounder behind Howard. While Vucevic was again excellent last season, his overall numbers seemed to plateau more than an improving young player’s should in his third year, as our Chuck Myron pointed out in Vucevic’s entry in our Extension Candidate series. Chuck also predicted a four-year, $48MM pact for the center in our 2014 Rookie Scale Extension Primer.
We heard in July that the Magic would prioritize extending Vucevic and teammate Tobias Harris, also entering his fourth season, once the season approached. Those rumors proved true even before tonight’s news broke, as there was neutral interest reported last month and just last week there was word that Vucevic and the Magic were in talks.