Players Eligible For In-Season Veteran Extensions In 2020/21

As we explain in our glossary entry on veteran contract extensions, rookie scale extensions have historically been the most common form of contract extension in the NBA. However, the league’s latest Collective Bargaining Agreement loosened the rules on eligibility for veteran extensions and made them a little more financially advantageous for players who don’t expect mega-deals.

As a result, we’ve seen a bump in veteran contract extensions in recent seasons. So far in the 2020/21 league year, six players have signed them.

[RELATED: 2020/21 NBA Contract Extension Tracker]

For certain extension-eligible players, such as Victor Oladipo, it may still make sense to wait until free agency to sign a new contract — the biggest raise he can receive on an extension would still be less than the maximum contract he’d be eligible to earn on the open market. The maximum starting salary a player like Oladipo 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 $12MM 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 $53.76MM. Gary Trent Jr. and Devonte’ Graham are among the players who are 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 an 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 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 a certain amount of time after the trade to sign a contract longer than three total years (including the current season) with a first-year raise exceeding 5%. If a player below is noted as having “limited” eligibility until a certain date, that’s why.

Typically, that “limited” extension eligibility lifts after six months, but this year those dates are based on a mapping table provided by the NBA, so they differ a little from case to case. Once a player regains his full extension eligibility, he once again becomes eligible to sign an extension of up to five total years (including the current season) with a 20% first-year raise.

Additionally, extension-eligible players with a player or team option for 2021/22 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 currently eligible for contract extensions:

Atlanta Hawks

Boston Celtics

Brooklyn Nets

Charlotte Hornets

Chicago Bulls

Cleveland Cavaliers

Dallas Mavericks

Denver Nuggets

Detroit Pistons

Golden State Warriors

  • None

Houston Rockets

Indiana Pacers

Los Angeles Clippers

Los Angeles Lakers

Memphis Grizzlies

Miami Heat

Milwaukee Bucks

Minnesota Timberwolves

New Orleans Pelicans

  • None

New York Knicks

Oklahoma City Thunder

Orlando Magic

Philadelphia 76ers

  • None

Phoenix Suns

Portland Trail Blazers

Sacramento Kings

San Antonio Spurs

Toronto Raptors

Utah Jazz

Washington Wizards

Photos courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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3 thoughts on “Players Eligible For In-Season Veteran Extensions In 2020/21

  1. Sillivan

    I am worried about Knicks $73 million practical cap room this summer

    Is this the worst free agent market ever if the players opt in ?

    Oladipo has declined due to quad injury

    Is he the best FA?

    • Walladipo and Wood

      Oladipo declined an extension with Indiana, and you can’t really blame him for wanting to leave. The Rockets still have his bird rights so only teams with a lot of cap space will be able to sign him and it’s highly unlikely that he would want to go to one of those bad teams. If he goes elsewhere it would most likely be in a sign and trade if the Rockets don’t want to keep him.

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