While free agent contracts can’t be signed during the July moratorium, first-round rookies are free to sign their deals, and No. 1 overall pick Ben Simmons has done just that. Simmons tweeted out a photo on Saturday that showed him putting pen to paper and making his first NBA contract with the Sixers official.
The cap hold for Simmons had been equal to the rookie scale amount for the first overall pick, which is $4,919,300 for 2016/17. However, as I outlined last month, first-round picks nearly always sign for 120% of that rookie-scale figure, which is the maximum amount allowed. That means Simmons’ cap hit will increase to $5,903,160 now that he’s under contract.
Although some teams will wait to finalize their deals with their first-round rookies in order to maximize their cap flexibility, that shouldn’t be an issue from the Sixers, who are well below the cap and almost certainly won’t need to make use of that extra $1MM or so this summer.
Now that he’s officially under contract, Simmons is set to participate in Summer League option with the 76ers this month.