Decisions on rookie scale options for the 2020/21 season were due on Thursday — any team that wanted to exercise a third- or fourth-year option on a player for next season was required to do so by last night.
As is typically the case, a huge majority of those options were picked up. Even for top picks, who are paid higher salaries due to the NBA’s rookie scale, those third- and fourth-year options are relatively team-friendly. So unless a player has fallen well short of his team’s expectations, it generally makes sense to lock in his salary for the following season at this point.
That was especially true this year of players with third-year options. As ESPN’s Bobby Marks notes (via Twitter), 2018 first-round picks went 30-for-30 on having those options picked up, a reflection of both the strength of that draft class and the value of controllable rookie scale contracts.
However, not every player with a 2020/21 team option had it exercised by Thursday’s deadline. The players who had those options declined will now be on track to reach unrestricted free agency during the summer of 2020, assuming they’re not waived before then.
Listed below are the players who had their options turned down, followed by the players whose options were exercised. If a player had his option picked up, his ’20/21 salary is now guaranteed and he won’t be eligible for free agency until at least 2021.
Note: These players will become unrestricted free agents in 2020.
- Josh Jackson, Grizzlies (fourth year, $8,930,242)
- Harry Giles, Kings (fourth year, $3,976,510)
- Ante Zizic, Cavaliers (fourth year, $3,872,215)
- Caleb Swanigan, Kings (fourth year, $3,665,787)
Note: These players will become eligible for rookie scale extensions on July 1, 2020. If they’re not extended, they’ll be on track for restricted free agency in 2021.
- Markelle Fultz, Magic ($12,288,697)
- Lonzo Ball, Pelicans ($11,003,782)
- Jayson Tatum, Celtics ($9,897,120)
- De’Aaron Fox, Kings ($8,099,627)
- Jonathan Isaac, Magic ($7,362,566)
- Lauri Markkanen, Bulls ($6,731,508)
- Frank Ntilikina, Knicks ($6,176,578)
- Dennis Smith Jr., Knicks ($5,686,677)
- Zach Collins, Trail Blazers ($5,406,255)
- Malik Monk, Hornets ($5,345,687)
- Luke Kennard, Pistons ($5,273,826)
- Donovan Mitchell, Jazz ($5,195,501)
- Bam Adebayo, Heat ($5,115,492)
- Justin Jackson, Mavericks ($5,029,650)
- D.J. Wilson, Bucks ($4,548,280)
- T.J. Leaf, Pacers ($4,326,825)
- John Collins, Hawks ($4,137,302)
- Terrance Ferguson, Thunder ($3,944,013)
- Jarrett Allen, Nets ($3,909,902)
- OG Anunoby, Raptors ($3,872,215)
- Kyle Kuzma, Lakers ($3,562,178)
- Tony Bradley, Jazz ($3,542,060)
- Derrick White, Spurs ($3,516,284)
- Josh Hart, Pelicans ($3,491,159)
Note: Teams will have to make fourth-year option decisions for 2021/22 on these players by October 31, 2020.
- Deandre Ayton, Suns ($10,018,200)
- Marvin Bagley III, Kings ($8,963,640)
- Luka Doncic, Mavericks ($8,049,360)
- Jaren Jackson Jr., Grizzlies ($7,257,360)
- Trae Young, Hawks ($6,571,800)
- Mohamed Bamba, Magic ($5,969,040)
- Wendell Carter Jr., Bulls ($5,448,840)
- Collin Sexton, Cavaliers ($4,991,880)
- Kevin Knox, Knicks ($4,588,680)
- Mikal Bridges, Suns ($4,359,000)
- Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Thunder ($4,141,320)
- Miles Bridges, Hornets ($3,934,320)
- Jerome Robinson, Clippers ($3,737,520)
- Michael Porter Jr., Nuggets ($3,550,800)
- Troy Brown, Wizards ($3,372,840)
- Zhaire Smith, Sixers ($3,204,600)
- Donte DiVincenzo, Bucks ($3,044,160)
- Lonnie Walker, Spurs ($2,892,000)
- Kevin Huerter, Hawks ($2,761,920)
- Josh Okogie, Timberwolves ($2,651,040)
- Grayson Allen, Grizzlies ($2,545,320)
- Chandler Hutchison, Bulls ($2,443,440)
- Aaron Holiday, Pacers ($2,345,640)
- Anfernee Simons, Trail Blazers ($2,252,040)
- Moritz Wagner, Wizards ($2,161,920)
- Landry Shamet, Clippers ($2,090,040)
- Robert Williams, Celtics ($2,029,920)
- Jacob Evans, Warriors ($2,017,320)
- Dzanan Musa, Nets ($2,002,800)
- Omari Spellman, Warriors ($1,988,280)
For a team-by-team breakdown of this year’s rookie scale option decisions for the 2020/21 season, along with full stories on each decision, you can check out our tracker.
Photos courtesy of USA Today Sports Images. Salary information from Basketball Insiders was used in the creation of this post.