Players Eligible For Veteran Contract Extensions

Rookie scale extensions have historically been the most common form of contract extension in the NBA. Veteran extensions are signed occasionally, but few players are eligible to receive them due to restrictive regulations — and for many of those extension-eligible vets, it simply makes more sense to wait until free agency to maximize their earnings.

[RELATED: 2018 NBA Contract Extension Tracker]

The NBA’s current Collective Bargaining Agreement has loosened the rules on eligibility for veteran contract extensions, and has also made them a little more financially advantageous for players who don’t expect mega-deals.

For stars like Kyrie Irving and Kemba Walker, who are currently eligible for veteran extensions, it still makes sense to wait until free agency, since the maximum raise they can receive on an extension is far below the maximum salary they’re eligible to earn on the open market. The maximum starting salary a player like Irving or Walker can receive in a veteran extension is up to 120% of his current salary.

A player on a more modest contract can receive a maximum starting salary worth up to 120% of the NBA’s estimated average salary on an extension, assuming that amount is greater than 120% of his current salary. For this season, 120% of the estimated average salary would work out to a $10.61MM salary in the first year of a contract extension. A player who signs an extension that fits that bill could get up to four years and $47.51MM. Spencer Dinwiddie and Malcolm Brogdon are among the players who will be eligible for that sort of deal.

Now that the regular season is in full swing, the number of veterans eligible for contract extensions has declined, since players with more than one year left on their contracts aren’t permitted to ink in-season extension. But there are still a number of veterans in the final year of their respective contracts who remain eligible for extensions right up until June 30, the last day of the current league year.

Listed below are the players who meet the criteria for a veteran extension. Players who were recently traded can be extended, but they have to wait for six months after the trade to sign a contract longer than three total years (including the current season). So if a player below is noted as having “limited” eligibility until a certain date, that’s probably why. Once those six months pass, he’s eligible to sign a contract of up to five years (including the current season).

Additionally, extension-eligible players with a player or team option for 2019/20 would have to eliminate that option year as part of an extension agreement in order to meet the necessary criteria.

Here’s the full list of veterans eligible for contract extensions until June 30:

Atlanta Hawks

  • Kent Bazemore
    • Note: 2019/20 player option must be declined.
  • Jeremy Lin
    • Note: Extension eligibility limited until January 13.

Boston Celtics

Brooklyn Nets

Charlotte Hornets

Chicago Bulls

Cleveland Cavaliers

  • None

Dallas Mavericks

Denver Nuggets

  • None

Detroit Pistons

Golden State Warriors

Houston Rockets

  • None

Indiana Pacers

Los Angeles Clippers

Los Angeles Lakers

Memphis Grizzlies

  • Marc Gasol
    • Note: 2019/20 player option must be declined.
  • Garrett Temple
    • Note: Extension eligibility limited until January 17.

Miami Heat

Milwaukee Bucks

Minnesota Timberwolves

New Orleans Pelicans

New York Knicks

Oklahoma City Thunder

Orlando Magic

Philadelphia 76ers

Phoenix Suns

Portland Trail Blazers

Sacramento Kings

San Antonio Spurs

  • None

Toronto Raptors

Utah Jazz

Washington Wizards

Information from Basketball Insiders was used in the creation of this post.

Photos courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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4 thoughts on “Players Eligible For Veteran Contract Extensions

  1. rxbrgr

    Luke — is there a maximum DECREASE in salary a player can accept that’s dictated by the CBA? (i.e. can a player go from making $12mm a year to $8mm long-term)?

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    • Luke Adams

      My understanding is that there’s no maximum decrease — I’m not 100% sure about that, but I’ve never read anything suggesting that the limits that apply to year-to-year salary decreases over the life of a contract apply to an extension as well.

      That sort of deal is pretty rare, but I recall Rudy Gay and Zach Randolph signing extensions a few years ago that lowered their salaries by quite a bit.

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  2. OCTraveler

    Let’s see … contract extension for Klay Thompson – “YES”. Contract extension for Ivica Zubac – “Are you _______ kidding me?”

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  3. x%sure

    Mavs lead in tough calls to make.

    Some team will be able to corner the market on Morris twins.

    @Formerlyz says Miami is not blocked form offered a worthy amount to Mcgruder but IDK how. There is Ellington also, maybe Wade. 2020 team # is $133mil, a probable taxpayer. Most Heaters are overpaid, except for the ones most valuable.

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