NBA teams combined to hand out more than $450MM in rookie scale extensions this year, based on estimates of the maximum salaries that Kyrie Irving and Klay Thompson are set to receive and the outcome of incentive clauses for several others. That total and the nine players who signed extensions exceed the numbers from 2013, 2012 and the preceding five years, perhaps demonstrating some of the first effects of the league’s new $24 billion TV deal, which kicks in for the 2016/17 season.
Irving was the first of this year’s rookie scale extension-eligibles to sign a deal, and Markieff Morris, Marcus Morris, Kenneth Faried and Nikola Vucevic followed after training camps began, all of them putting pen to paper more than a week ahead of the October 31st deadline. Still, there was plenty of action in the final hours, as Thompson, Ricky Rubio and Alec Burks all signed extensions the last day they could. Here’s a recap of the players who received rookie scale extensions this year:
- Kyrie Irving (Cavaliers): Five years, maximum salary
- Klay Thompson (Warriors): Four years, maximum salary*
- Ricky Rubio (Timberwolves): Four years, $55MM (plus incentives)
- Kenneth Faried (Nuggets): Four years, $50MM (plus incentives)
- Nikola Vucevic (Magic): Four years, $48MM (plus incentives)
- Kemba Walker (Hornets): Four years, $48MM
- Alec Burks (Jazz): Four years, $42MM (plus incentives)
- Markieff Morris (Suns): Four years, $32MM
- Marcus Morris (Suns): Four years, $20MM
The following extension-eligible players didn’t sign new deals and will hit the open market next summer. They’ll be restricted free agents, assuming their teams tender qualifying offers.
- Bismack Biyombo (Hornets)
- Jimmy Butler (Bulls)
- Norris Cole (Heat)
- Tobias Harris (Magic)
- Reggie Jackson (Thunder)
- Cory Joseph (Spurs)
- Enes Kanter (Jazz)
- Brandon Knight, (Bucks)
- Kawhi Leonard (Spurs)
- Iman Shumpert (Knicks)
- Tristan Thompson (Cavaliers)
- Derrick Williams (Kings)
This year’s extension market was much more robust than last year, when only six players signed rookie scale extensions. That set up a wild summer of restricted free agency that entailed a max offer sheet for Gordon Hayward and drawn-out negotiations for Eric Bledsoe and Greg Monroe. Next year, Kawhi Leonard, Jimmy Butler, Tristan Thompson and Reggie Jackson figure to lead what appears to be a strong crop of restricted free agents.
* — Thompson will only make the maximum salary if it is equal to or less than $15.5MM for 2015/16. If it is greater than that amount, Thompson’s starting salary will be $15.5MM with 7.5% raises for each subsequent season.