The Lakers‘ contract with Yi Jianlian is very team-friendly in its structure, and could make the Chinese big man a solid trade chip this season, writes Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders. Although he has already provided a few details on Yi’s unorthodox contract, Pincus gets a little more specific in his latest piece, writing that the new Laker will earn $2.3MM incentive bonuses when he reaches 20 games played, 40 games, and 59 games.
Because those incentives are considered “likely,” Yi currently counts for $8MM against the salary cap, but he won’t receive his full salary unless he remains on an NBA roster beyond January 10, 2017, and appears in at least 59 games. If the former lottery pick fails to make an impact early on with the Lakers, he could be traded after December 15 and before his salary becomes guaranteed in January, since his cap hit would significantly outweigh the money owed to him, and he could easily be waived.
Here are a few more contract and cap notes from Pincus:
- Tarik Black‘s new two-year deal with the Lakers is worth about $12.85MM in total, but the second year is fully non-guaranteed, tweets Pincus. Los Angeles will have to make a decision on Black’s 2017/18 salary by July 4 or three days before the end of the July moratorium, whichever happens later.
- The Mavericks paid $3.2MM to the Pacers in last month’s Jeremy Evans trade, according to Pincus (Twitter link). Dallas had to dump Evans’ guaranteed $1,227,286 salary to create cap room for new, incoming players, and Indiana made a profit by agreeing to take him. Teams can send out a maximum of $3.5MM in trades during a league year, so Dallas used nearly all its trade cash in that move.
- On the other end of the spectrum, the Trail Blazers sent just $75K to the Magic to acquire Shabazz Napier in July, per Pincus (Twitter link). Orlando no longer had use for Napier, so the team was willing to move him in exchange for the minimum amount of cash a team can receive a deal — $75K.