A pair of Celtics players benefited financially in a major way as a result of the team’s Game 7 win over Miami on Sunday in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Swingman Jaylen Brown, who previously earned a bonus worth $321,429 for making the Eastern Finals, had that bonus voided and replaced by a bonus worth triple that amount, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, who tweets that Brown will receive $964,286 for making the NBA Finals.
Meanwhile, big man Al Horford didn’t receive a bonus on this year’s salary as a result of Boston’s Eastern Finals victory, but his salary guarantee for next season’s salary has increased. Horford is on the books for $26.5MM in the final year of his contract in 2022/23, but only $14.5MM had been guaranteed. That partial guarantee has increased to $19.5MM now that the Celtics are in the NBA Finals, tweets Marks.
If the Celtics defeat the Warriors and win the NBA Finals, Brown would receive another bonus and Horford’s ’22/23 salary would become fully guaranteed. In that scenario, the Celtics – who are currently $358K below the tax line – would go into the tax as a result of Brown’s final bonus, making them a taxpaying team, tweets Marks.
While the Celtics made an effort at the trade deadline to stay out of tax territory by sending Bol Bol and PJ Dozier to Orlando in a salary-dump deal, it’s safe to assume team ownership would be comfortable paying a very modest tax bill in exchange for a title. The Bucks were in a similar situation a year ago, when Jrue Holiday‘s championship bonus pushed their team salary over the tax line.