Clippers Sign Luke Kennard To Four-Year Extension

DECEMBER 22, 2:05pm: Kennard’s extension includes a team option for the fourth year, reports Michael Scotto of HoopsHype (Twitter link).


DECEMBER 21, 5:13pm: The Clippers have officially announced Kennard’s new contract extension.

“We are excited to secure a commitment from a dynamic, emerging young player who continues to grow every day,” Clippers president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank said in a statement. “We have been impressed with Luke’s versatility and maturity, and it’s been a privilege to get to know him better during this training camp. We believe he is a fantastic fit for our organization and we are delighted he feels the same.”


DECEMBER 21, 3:22pm: The Clippers and guard Luke Kennard have reached an agreement on a four-year, $64MM rookie scale contract extension, agents Aaron Mintz and Dave Spahn tell Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).

The deal includes $56MM in guaranteed money, plus $8MM in additional bonuses that are considered attainable, tweets Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times.

It’s an impressive number for Kennard, who missed much of the 2019/20 season due to knee issues. He played well when healthy, averaging 15.8 PPG, 4.1 APG, and 3.5 RPG with a .442/.399/.893 shooting line in 28 games (32.9 MPG).

The Pistons’ new front office sent Kennard to Los Angeles in a three-team offseason trade that saw Saddiq Bey and Rodney McGruder land in Detroit. The 24-year-old’s asking price on an extension – along with his injury history and the team’s change in direction – played a part in Detroit’s decision to move him, tweets James L. Edwards III of The Athletic.

The Clippers’ investment in Kennard suggests his new club has confidence that his knee problems are behind him. If he earns the full $16MM per year on his new deal, that would put Kennard in the same neighborhood of recent free agent signees like Davis Bertans ($16MM per year), Marcus Morris ($16MM), and Malik Beasley ($15MM).

New contracts for Morris, Paul George, and now Kennard have pushed the Clippers well over the projected cap and likely into luxury tax territory for the 2021/22 season, notes ESPN’s Bobby Marks (via Twitter).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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46 thoughts on “Clippers Sign Luke Kennard To Four-Year Extension

  1. Cap & Crunch

    Is that a typo Luke?

    Clippers are time traveling back to 2016 it seems

  2. wow another overpay by LA. Unfortunately they have no choice because another team will overpay, and they don’t have enough assets to make moves and still contend.

  3. x_burner_X

    Dont think Jerry is still the top decision maker there, these last few moves are burying them in the long run – i thought Kuzma was an overpay, but this is just crazy. Not so sure Kawhi re-signs here.

    • Cap & Crunch

      Ponzi scheme to filter more money to Kawhi via MM and Kennard almost seems more plausible than handing 128 mill to MM and Kennard these days

      – Im perplexed as well

    • x%sure

      I suspect Frank fully took over when he won the EOY. Indeed the award may have been grooved to him just to help the transition… GMs can work together, and Frank was the future.

  4. GoLandCrabs

    I love how the “omg Lakers gave Kuzma 40 million” crowd acts like this and the Morris contracts are good for the Clippers.

  5. Luckylefty2

    Not trying to bring up the race card but white role players definitely get overpaid.

    • Cap & Crunch

      They…kinda do

      Id say White Americans, Euros often get a little underpaid on a whole

    • x%sure

      Kennard should be a starter, so the point is lost.

      People don’t know Kennard because he played on a nonentity but he is a playmaker, not just a shooter. This is important on a team with Pat/Lou as the PG.

      DET did not want to pay this, and he might be seen as fragile… and they tried to trade him before.

      • x%sure

        Pistons insiders have been doubtful of Kennard’s future, even as he seemed to be doing well… I thought it was because of his knees. But if it was because he was going to demand this much on an extension, and it seemed too much for someone who looked so slow compared to Reggie Jackson (it’s been that long), the Clippers did well here with a passing 2/3 on a team needing a passer.

  6. KnickerbockerAl

    Morris right now is a much better player than Kuzma. He’s a two way player who can guard Bron. Really bad comparison. 15 mill a yr is not overpaid to Clippers. Kennard considering he’s never played for them. Well you can criticize it, plus injuries. But they need his shooting. And on this team he will get plenty of good looks. Shows me Clippers are serious about contending. When you are a contender. It’s when you shouldn’t be shy about spending. You don’t get many chances. Plus they compete with Lakers. So you have to willing to spend. This shows strong ownership to me. I would love that if I’m a fan. Kennard is 24 and coming from Pistons. He should have a big yr in LA.

    • implant

      And thats the Clippers problem. Their competition are the Lakers. Their bar is to beat the Lakers. The Lakers only have one bar and thats #18

      • KnickerbockerAl

        only you see a problem. What I see is reality. Lakers are defending champs. They are the team to beat. And they are the competition in their home city. Just keeping it real.

        • implant

          Been out here and a Laker fan for more years then I want to admit. Clippers could win back to back championships and they still wouldn’t be close to capturing the city. Not sure why any organization wants to play under that shadow. They should take their sorry past and move to Seattle.

  7. Seems like a bunch, beyond what he’s accomplished. Certainly a risk, at least, if only because of the injury. But Kennard has a GREAT skill set for the modern NBA. He can shoot, facilitate and defend. But he’ll have to stay healthy and get starter minutes (though not necessarily start) to justify this salary. With a streamlined bench, he might.

        • Stones Fan

          Lol by all means wishful think. There is NO metrics on Kennard that deems him a plus defender. Lol

          • Why not look before talking out of your butt. Maybe that’s all you’re capable of. DRPM is readily available. It’s not an NBA 2k concept, so I’ll explain briefly: a positive rating for a player his age in his first year as a starter with a bad team is good. Have a good night.

  8. Probably 4 high 2nd picks + 20M for McGruder contract … D could have let him go 4 free or trade him for little compensation that was not as Bad as this Clippers/Nets trade when they also gave TBrown for a 17th pick and Musa 5M contract …

  9. Very Barry

    Nobody else in the NBA would give Kennard even half of that money. Incredibly big overpay. Let him play this season without an extension. If he proves good enough and can stay healthy then sign him. Dude just isn’t that good.

  10. Simmons>Russ

    Huge overpay. Clippers suck as a franchise.
    So they sign Kennard to 16mil a season, haven’t got Kawhi his PG he’s been wanting. Pay PG the biggest deal of all time after one of the worst playoffs series failures in a very long time. Lots of complains about the locker room fall outs.

    I can see Kawhi Leonard requesting a trade very soon.

    Who knows maybe Harden Tucker Hosue and 2 firsts for Kawhi and Ibaka.

    Kawhi with Wall a passing/playmaking PG, Gordon the knock down shooter, Ibaka his mate that can play 4 or 5. Christian Wood who looks to be really good and developing. Cousins has less pressure and minutes sharing the centre duties with Ibaka and Wood.

    Harden on the Clippers with Beverly PG Morris and Tucker. That’s some dogs. Plus Lou Will Luke Kennard Ivan Zubac and so on. Seems like this roster would suit Harden a lot and suit the coach Tyron Lue.

  11. dfree123

    Lakers getting Kuzma at $40 million is looking really nice after these contracts signed today.

    • x%sure

      Kuzma got signed to traded. Kennard got signed to fill a gap in their lineup. Very different levels. So no.

      • Simmons>Russ

        A gap? As fourth SG? Behind PG Lou Will and Batum, even if you say Batum is playing SF, Kennard will still be behind an all star SG, one of the best sixth men of all time and then it’ll be him.

        Clippers have a gaps but back up back up SG isn’t one.

        • x%sure

          I meant starter. What are you talking about? Fourth SG my butt, but that seems to be what you think.
          Why would Batum start at guard? Lou comes off the bench, sometimes at PG. Terrance Mann? Another of the forwards? A one-guard offense, new trick.

          You’re being dumb and attributing it to me. The Clips just signed him for a $4/64 like it or not. Kennard will sit the bench when he gets injured.

  12. Simmons>Russ

    Bye bye Kawhi he’s gone end of this year, opting out and gone.

    My bet is he ends up with Dallas. The new big 3 Kawhi Luka and KP

    • x%sure

      Kawhi was probably the one to want to keep the Pat/Lou combo. That’s a guess but the FO never seemed to go after another good small guard. Instead, Kennard, more than just a Shamet replacement. It’s someone to take care of Kawhi with creative entries and keep the team together.
      Kennard should help keep Kawhi!

      • Simmons>Russ

        Yeah cause Kawhi really loves outspoken load annoying players it really suit his personality of being chilled quiet and layer back..

        Kawhi made what he wanted clear. A new starting point guard, a less noisy locker room, a new coach, and Ibaka he got 2/4. Can’t see how paying a young back up back up SG keeps a top 5 level player.

        He was going to hit FA no matter what and want the best chance of winning a ring plus somewhere to be comfortable and in a good location. That’s Kawhi. Dallas ticks all those boxes.

        • x%sure

          Now you’re saying the new guys are loud & outspoken? Why else bring that up? You don’t even know, and I would guess not.

          The Clips did not get a new PG, they already have two fine ones on good contracts, but they got the next best: wings that can pass in Kennard and Batum. Better passing is what the Clips plan to keep Kawhi satisfied with. Hence $4/64. Not my call, just what is.

          Kawhi to Dallas is a wild prediction but possible. But Kawhi is in his home town, a comfortable good location. They work hard in Texas to be not-California.
          You’re fritzing.

  13. Dtownwarrior78

    Good luck Clippers fans. Dude will be on the injured list before game 10. As a Detroit fan I can tell you that everytime we got a glimmer of what he could do, he would get hurt the next game. ALWAYS hurt! Not a bad player at all, but as they always say, the best ability in sports is availability, and he ain’t got it!

  14. mike.honcho

    Who knows, the 3 teams who made plans and cap-space for Giannis, might wind up with Kawhi.

    That FA class of 2021, turned slim really fast.

    • Cap & Crunch

      Sure did….. Man a guy like Derozan can just walk into 100+ mill next year with a solid year this season

  15. KnickerbockerAl

    Luke Kennard has never had major surgery. Most serious injury. Is knee tendinitis. Which can be controlled and corrected. He’s had bangs and nagging injuries. I don’t watch Pistons. But he won’t get those with Clippers. Cause they won’t key on him. He’ll get plenty of open looks. He’s like the fifth option on Clippers. We’ll see
    link to foxsports.com

  16. Jeff Zanghi

    Wow seems like a lot of $ but I guess he did average almost 16 PPG while shooting relatively effectively from nearly 40% from 3…so if he keeps that up and improves his overall statline even just a little it could turn into a bargain. Say he winds up averaging 20 PPG while shooting 45% from 3. if that’s the case any team in the NBA would be willing to pay him $16M/year. But IMO if he’s already at his peak, which is also totally possible, then $16M/year for a guy who’s going to average 15/16 PPG seems a little steep.

  17. If you shoot 40% from three. The going rate is one million per point. Eg. Average 16 points = 16 million per year. NBA Sniper rate.

  18. mike.honcho

    Bertans, Kennard, Harris, etc got paid. I can’t imagine what Duncan Robinson can get in free-agency.

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