Two-time MVP Stephen Curry has earned a raise, but the Warriors can’t afford to renegotiate, writes Danny Leroux of The Sporting News. Curry will receive a little more than $12.1MM next season in the final year of his contract, about half of what other top stars make. Working out a new deal over the summer would prevent Curry from reaching free agency, but it would also upend the team’s salary structure, Leroux warns.
Curry is eligible for a new contract because he will be entering the fifth year of his current deal. However, any raise he receives — and it would surely be a maximum contract starting in the neighborhood of $25.9MM — would drain Golden State’s cap space. The Warriors plan to operate under the cap this summer, and a new contract for Curry could cost the team Harrison Barnes or Shaun Livingston and Festus Ezeli. Also, the NBA limits renegotiated extensions to four seasons, which would include 2016/17. If Curry waits until free agency next summer, he can receive a five-year contract that would run through 2021/22, and he could receive even more money if max deals are increased as part of a 2017 labor renegotiation.
There’s more from the Pacific Division:
- David Blatt is not on Warriors coach Steve Kerr’s short list to become his top assistant, tweets Monte Poole of CSNBayArea. Kerr was interested in Blatt for the position two years ago.
- Brian Shaw is nearing a return to the Lakers as lead assistant, but the rest of Luke Walton’s staff is uncertain, writes Bill Oram of The Orange County Register. Shaw, who was an assistant in L.A. under Phil Jackson from 2005-11, was also rumored to be a candidate for assistant posts with the Pacers and Magic, Oram reports. He adds that no one knows if any members of former head coach Byron Scott’s staff will be retained, as Walton may seek coaches with ties to the Lakers or he may try to lure other assistants from Golden State, where Walton had been serving as lead assistant.
- Shaw’s hiring is imminent, tweets Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News, who says the two sides are finalizing the contract.
- It wouldn’t take a playoff team to pry free agent combo guard Jamal Crawford away from the Clippers, tweets Noah Coslov of CineSport. “Definitely money, situation, could be a team on the rise,” Crawford said in listing his priorities in an interview on Bleacher Report Radio. “Doesn’t have to be contender.”