In a tweet and Instagram video, Bobby Marks of ESPN breaks down the creative structure the Rockets employed for Dante Exum‘s contract, which was initially reported to be worth a fully non-guaranteed $15MM over three years.
The base salary for the first year is $2.5MM non-guaranteed, with $2.5MM in likely incentives. As Marks states in the video, Exum can earn $1MM for averaging 15.8 minutes per game and another $1.5MM for playing 15.8 MPG and recording a net rating of at least +2.7. Both incentives – which apply to all three seasons of the deal – are considered “likely” because Exum averaged 19.3 MPG with a +3.6 net rating in 2020/21.
The leaguewide salary guarantee date is January 10, so if Exum is still on the Rockets by that date his salary would be guaranteed and would be considered $5MM for trade purposes.
There’s more from Texas:
- In the same tweet, Marks states that the first year of Frank Ntilikina‘s contract with the Mavericks will be guaranteed.
- Kelly Iko of The Athletic breaks down what he thinks the Rockets‘ depth chart should look like, not necessarily what it actually will. Iko projects a starting lineup of Kevin Porter Jr., Jalen Green, Danuel House, Jae’Sean Tate, and Christian Wood. He also expects that rookie Josh Christopher and second-year forward Kenyon Martin Jr. might force the coaches to play them extended minutes because of their hard work.
- The Mavericks have a similar group as last season’s squad, essentially replacing wings Josh Richardson and the recently retired J.J. Redick with free agent acquisitions Reggie Bullock and Sterling Brown. Zach Harper of The Athletic gave the team a B-minus for its offseason moves. He states that the team’s main improvement will have to come from internal development if it wants to climb the standings in the West.
- The Rockets have had one of the best overall team records over the past 15-plus years, so selling a rebuilding team to a fan base used to success will be a challenge. Jonathan Feigen of the Houson Chronicle explores what that might entail.