Domantas Sabonis

Edwards, Haliburton Earn Salary Increases With All-NBA Nods

The maximum-salary rookie scale extensions that Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards and Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton signed last offseason will have starting salaries worth 30% of the 2024/25 salary cap instead of 25% after both players made All-NBA teams. Edwards earned a spot on the Second Team, while Haliburton made the Third Team.

As our maximum-salary projections for ’24/25 show, based on a $141MM cap, the five-year deals signed by Edwards and Haliburton will now be worth $245,340,000 instead of $204,450,000. Those numbers could change if the cap comes in above or below $141MM.

Edwards and Haliburton agreed to Rose Rule language in their respective extensions. The Rose Rule allow players coming off their rookie scale contracts to receive salaries worth more than 25% of the cap in year five if they make an All-NBA team during the season (or two of the three seasons) before their extension goes into effect. Players can also qualify by being named Most Valuable Player or Defensive Player of the Year.

Hornets guard LaMelo Ball had similar language in his maximum-salary extension, but injuries prevented him from having any shot at All-NBA team in 2023/24, so his contract will be worth $204.45MM over five years.

Here are more of the financial implications of today’s All-NBA selections:

  • Because Sixers guard Tyrese Maxey didn’t make an All-NBA team, his maximum salary as a restricted free agent this offseason will be worth 25% of the cap instead of 30%. He’ll be eligible for a five-year deal up to a projected $204.45MM.
  • Mavericks guard Luka Doncic and Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander met the super-max performance criteria by earning All-NBA nods for a second straight year, but neither player has enough years of service yet to sign a designated veteran extension this summer. Both Doncic and Gilgeous-Alexander will be eligible to sign super-max extensions, starting at 35% of the cap instead of 30%, during the 2025 offseason. As Bobby Marks of ESPN outlines (Twitter links), Doncic would be eligible for a five-year extension projected to be worth over $346MM that begins in 2026/27, while SGA could sign a four-year extension worth a projected $294MM+ that would begin in 2027/28.
  • Celtics forward Jayson Tatum is one year ahead of Doncic and Gilgeous-Alexander — he met the super-max performance criteria by making a second straight All-NBA team in 2023, but was still one year away from having the required years of service at that time. He’ll be eligible this July to sign a five-year super-max extension that will start at 35% of the ’25/26 cap and be worth a projected $314.85MM.
  • Players who would have been eligible for super-max extensions if they had made an All-NBA team include Kings guard De’Aaron Fox, Heat big man Bam Adebayo, Pelicans forward Brandon Ingram, and Nuggets guard Jamal Murray. All of those players could still qualify if they remain with their current teams and earn All-NBA honors next season, though it’s worth noting that Ingram is considered a trade candidate this summer and is highly unlikely to get a super-max offer even if he qualifies.
  • Kings center Domantas Sabonis earned a $1.3MM contract bonus as a result of being named to the All-NBA Third Team, tweets James Ham of The Kings Beat.

2023/24 All-NBA Teams Announced

The All-NBA teams have been announced for the 2023/24 season (Twitter link).

A total of 99 media members voted on the honors, with players receiving five points for a First Team vote, three points for a Second Team vote and one point for a Third Team vote. This year’s All-NBA teams are as follows:

First Team

Second Team

Third Team

Gilgeous-Alexander and Jokic were the only two unanimous First Team selections, receiving 99 of 99 possible votes. Doncic earned 98 First Team votes but was named to the Second Team on one ballot. Antetokounmpo (88), Tatum (65), Brunson (37), Edwards (3), and Durant (2) were the only other players to receive multiple First Team votes.

Others receiving votes and their point totals are the CelticsJaylen Brown (50), the ClippersPaul George (16), the SixersTyrese Maxey (16), the TimberwolvesRudy Gobert (12), the SpursVictor Wembanyama (11), the PelicansZion Williamson (11), the Magic’s Paolo Banchero (10), the KingsDe’Aaron Fox (9) the Heat’s Bam Adebayo (7) and the BullsDeMar DeRozan (1).

This is the first season that a minimum number of games was required to qualify for most postseason awards under the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. Among the stars who might have received All-NBA consideration if they had reached the 65-game threshold are Sixers center Joel Embiid, who was the 2023 MVP, along with Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell, Grizzlies guard Ja Morant, Knicks forward Julius Randle and Celtics big man Kristaps Porzingis.

This was also the first season that voting for the All-NBA team was positionless, though that didn’t have a huge impact on the results, as the top two teams still feature two guards, a pair of forwards, and a center. The Third Team is made up a center, three guards, and just one forward.

Wembanyama, who received two votes for the Second Team and five for the Third Team, was the only rookie named on any of the ballots. Earlier this week, he became the first rookie to earn a spot on an All-Defensive First Team.

The Lakers with Davis and James and the Suns with Durant and Booker were the only teams to have multiple players honored. They were both eliminated in the first round of the playoffs.

Several players became eligible for salary increases or earned a bonus by achieving All-NBA honors. Read more here.

Nikola Jokic Named Most Valuable Player

Nuggets center Nikola Jokic has been selected as the NBA’s Most Valuable Player for the third time in four years, the league announced (via Twitter).

Jokic won the Michael Jordan Trophy by a wide margin, showing up on all 99 ballots and collecting 79 votes for first place, 18 for second place and two for third place, giving him a total of 926 points. Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander finished second, collecting 640 total points by coming in first on 15 ballots, second on 40, third on 40, fourth on three and fifth on one.

Rounding out the top five were Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (4-36-50-8-0-566), Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (1-1-4-44-23-192) and Knicks guard Jalen Brunson (0-3-1-28-32-142).

Also receiving votes were Celtics forward Jayson Tatum (0-0-1-14-39-89), Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards (0-1-1-1-3-18), Kings center Domantas Sabonis (one fourth-place vote) and Suns forward Kevin Durant (one fifth-place vote).

Jokic becomes the ninth player to claim at least three MVP awards (Twitter link). He ties Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Moses Malone, and trails only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (six), Michael Jordan and Bill Russell (five each), and Wilt Chamberlain and LeBron James (four each).

The Nuggets celebrated the honor by tweeting a video tribute to Jokic narrated by his wife, Natalija.

Jokic posted another outstanding statistical season, averaging 26.4 points, 12.4 rebounds and 9.0 assists in 79 games. He shot 58.3% from the field and 35.9% from three-point range as Denver claimed the second seed in the Western Conference.

Bennett Durando of The Denver Post took a closer look at Jokic’s historic season, noting that he finished fifth in the league in total points, third in total rebounds and second in total assists. He also collected 25 triple-doubles and posted a true shooting percentage above 65% for the third straight season while leading the NBA in most advanced stats, including PER, VORP, box plus-minus, and win shares.

“I think he’s stated his case pretty well,” Jamal Murray said today before the award was announced. “He does it every night. It’s hard to do what he does and face the kind of pressure that he does each and every day. He does it in the smallest ways. He makes everybody around us better. He’s a leader on the court and someone we expect greatness from every time he steps on the court. And he’s delivered. … He’s been so consistent all his career, all his MVP runs. He’s been so consistent. So I don’t expect one or two bad games to sway that in any way.”

And-Ones: Media Rights, Awards, Hall Of Fame, Lithuania, More

The NBC is making a strong play for the right to broadcast NBA games beginning in 2025/26, according to Joe Flint, Amol Sharma, and Isabella Simonetti of The Wall Street Journal (subscription required). People familiar with the situation tell the WSJ trio that Comcast’s NBCUniversal is prepared to pay $2.5 billion per year for a package of NBA games.

As we wrote last week, Amazon Prime Video is in strong position to become a broadcast partner for the NBA, with ESPN/ABC (Disney) also making good progress in talks.

After operating with just two partners (ESPN/ABC and TNT) in its current media rights deal, the NBA is looking to expand to at least three partners this time around. If Amazon and NBC were to join the mix with Disney, it could leave TNT (Warner Bros. Discovery) on the outside looking in, though the league reportedly hasn’t ruled out making four separate deals.

As Flint, Sharma, and Simonetti detail, TNT Sports paid about $1.2 billion per year for its NBA rights the previous media rights agreement, which will expire after the 2024/25 season. TNT remains involved in negotiations with the league and will have the right to match NBC’s offer, but would be looking at a substantial increase in cost.

If Comcast is able to reach a deal with the NBA, their package would include both regular season and playoff games on NBC and their streaming service Peacock, according to the WSJ report.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • After revealing its Executive of the Year winner on Tuesday, the NBA has two more minor award announcements on tap this week, per the league (Twitter link) — Teammate of the Year will be announced on Wednesday, with the Hustle Award to follow on Thursday.
  • The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame recently announced that its enshrinement ceremony for 2024 has been postponed from August to October, primarily for Olympic-related logistical reasons. Vince Carter and Chauncey Billups are among the headliners of the ’24 class, which was revealed earlier this month.
  • Eight years after being told by a Pistons doctor that he wouldn’t be able to play basketball again due to a back injury, Lithuanian big man Donatas Motiejunas remains active in the EuroLeague and has played in 123 consecutive games. In a conversation with Donatas Urbonas of BasketNews.com (subscription required), Motiejunas discussed how that incident – which resulted in a voided deadline-day trade – changed the trajectory of his professional career.
  • Speaking of Lithuanian big men, Kings center Domantas Sabonis and Pelicans center Jonas Valanciunas are both expected to suit up for Lithuania’s national team in their Olympic qualifying tournament in Puerto Rico this summer, according to head coach Kazys Maksvytis. Eurohoops has the story, via a report from Lithuanian outlet 15min.lt.
  • With LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Stephen Curry combining for a single playoff win, this spring feels like a passing-of-the-torch moment for the NBA, according to John Hollinger of The Athletic.

Pacific Notes: O’Neale, Allen, Hyland, Leonard, Monk, Sabonis

Suns coach Frank Vogel switched up his rotation in the team’s 124-108 win over the Clippers on Wednesday, Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic reports. Royce O’Neale was inserted into the lineup in place of Grayson Allen, while Thaddeus Young replaced Drew Eubanks as the backup center.

However, the Suns could go right back to Allen as the starter against Sacramento on Friday. “It’s just something we’ve been talking about,” Vogel said. “If we get into a playoff matchup where we have a bigger opponent, then we feel like (O’Neale’s) size in the starting lineup is something that would make sense. We didn’t want to go to that with Grayson coming off the bench for the first time having never done it. We used this one game to let Grayson just feel the rhythm of coming off the bench, if it’s needed in the playoffs.”

We have more from the Pacific Division:

  • Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, Russell Westbrook, James Harden, Ivica Zubac and Norman Powell sat out the second game of a back-to-back on Wednesday. Bones Hyland carried the Clippers‘ offense in their absence, pumping in a career-high 37 points, Janis Carr of the Orange County Register notes. Leonard sat out his sixth consecutive game because of inflammation in his right knee. He might not return until the postseason but coach Tyronn Lue believes his superstar forward will be ready to go by that point.
  • Kings guard Malik Monk was the solid frontrunner for the Sixth Man of the Year award until he suffered a sprained MCL in his right knee late last month. Center Domantas Sabonis said Monk still deserves the honor. “Monk has to win it,” Sabonis told HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto. “If he doesn’t win it, it’s rigged. He definitely brings energy and light. If we’re down, he’s always up and in a good mood off the court, too, so that really helps during a long season with ups and downs.” Coach Mike Brown concurs. “It should not even be a debate on Sixth Man of the Year with Malik’s body of work and us fighting for a playoff spot,” Brown said. “He should be the hands-down winner.”
  • Monk will be an unrestricted free agent after the season. Sacramento has Early Bird rights on Monk and can sign him up to $78MM over four years. “I’d love to play here again, for sure. I’ve been here for two years and made friends with everyone, including the training staff and front office,” Monk told Scotto. Sabonis said the organization can’t afford to lose him: “We’ve got to keep him. He’s a big piece for us moving forward.”
  • Sabonis saw his 61-game double-double streak end on Tuesday, Cliff Brunt of The Associated Press writes. He had eight points and 13 rebounds against Oklahoma City. It’s the seventh-longest streak in league history and the longest since the NBA and ABA merged prior to the 1976/77 season.

And-Ones: West, MVP Race, All-NBA, Comanche

NBA legend Jerry West is being inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame for a third time, sources tell ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Previously enshrined as a player (1979) and as a member of the 1960 U.S. Olympic team (2010), the 85-year-old has now been elected as a Hall of Fame contributor.

The latest induction into the Hall of Fame recognizes West’s work as a team executive, including general manager stints with the Lakers and Grizzlies, as well as time spent as a consultant for the Warriors and Clippers. West won eight championships in those roles, per ESPN, and won Executive of the Year awards in 1995 and 2004.

Here are more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

Pacific Notes: James, Beal, Vezenkov, Sabonis

The Lakers are listing LeBron James as doubtful for Tuesday’s road game against the Bucks because of soreness in his left ankle, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN.

James missed a game against Milwaukee on March 8 due to the same issue. The Lakers are currently ninth in the Western Conference as they head out on a six-game road swing. James played 38 minutes in the Lakers’ 150-145 win over the Indiana Pacers on Sunday, supplying 26 points and 10 assists.

We have more from the Pacific Division:

  • Bradley Beal has to play third wheel in the Suns’ star-studded lineup and coach Frank Vogel praises the star wing for filling a different role than he had as the Wizards’ top scorer. “Brad’s really sacrificing for the betterment of this team,” Vogel said, per Gerald Bourguet of GoPhnx.com. Beal’s scoring average of 18.1 PPG is his lowest since the 2015/16 season.
  • The Kings’ Sasha Vezenkov was a European star but it wasn’t always smooth sailing when he played for Barcelona, he told Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo (hat tip to Sportando. Still, he wouldn’t rule out playing there again. “I had difficult years at Barcelona,” he said. “I think they didn’t treat me well, but not the people who lead the organization, with Juan Carlos Navarro I have a very good relationship and I learned a lot from him. I have friends in the organization, I never say no, but it’s like my time there was difficult for the team and for me. I can’t predict the future, but I have friends I respect a lot.” Injuries have limited Vezenkov to 35 games so far in his first NBA season.
  • The Kings’ Domantas Sabonis had his 53rd consecutive double-double on Saturday with 21 points, 14 rebounds and eight assists, tying Kevin Love’s record for the longest single-season streak since the ABA-NBA merger, Chris Biderman of the Sacramento Bee notes. Sabonis broke that record in style on Monday by posting a triple-double in a win over Philadelphia. “That’s the thing about it, is it’s extremely difficult,” coach Mike Brown said over the weekend. “It’s unheard of. And I’ve been around great players, Hall of Fame players, that didn’t have a chance to get this record that Domas is chasing. But he works so hard and he is the definition of consistency. I can see why others who aren’t around him don’t really feel like it’s a big deal because he makes it look easy. It’s like normal for him.”

Pacific Notes: Kawhi, Little, O’Neale, Warriors, Kings

The Clippers got a health scare on Tuesday, when Kawhi Leonard had to leave the team’s game against Minnesota in the first half due to back spasms, per Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN. If Leonard has to miss any time, it would complicate L.A.’s push for one of the top playoff seeds in the West, writes Law Murray of The Athletic.

However, Leonard traveled with the Clippers to Chicago and is listed as questionable for Thursday’s game, tweets Youngmisuk, so it doesn’t appear the issue is significant.

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • Suns forward Nassir Little, who has missed the past seven games due to left knee inflammation, was a full participant in Wednesday’s practice and is expected to be available for Thursday’s game in Boston, tweets Duane Rankin of The Arizona Republic. Little is listed as probable for the showdown with the Celtics.
  • Suns forward Royce O’Neale said on Wednesday that it “means a lot” to hear team owner Mat Ishbia say that re-signing O’Neale will be a priority for the club this offseason, adding that it shows how much Ishbia “wants to win and keep the guys together” (Twitter video link via Rankin).
  • The Warriors‘ loss to Dallas on Wednesday makes it increasingly likely that Golden State will end up in the bottom half of the play-in bracket in the Western Conference, meaning they’d have to win two play-in games to even qualify for the playoffs, writes Anthony Slater of The Athletic. The 34-31 club is now 3.5 games back of the No. 8 Mavs, who would hold the tiebreaker edge on Golden State if they win one of the team’s two remaining meetings in early April. “Yeah, it feels daunting,” Brandin Podziemski said.“Just for the fact that you don’t want to be the 10th seed. The 11th seed is, I think, four or five games behind us. So for us to get that low I don’t think is going to happen. But you don’t want to be the 10th seed and have to play two road games before you get into an actual series.”
  • A pair of Kings players set franchise records in a blowout win over Milwaukee on Tuesday, as Domantas Sabonis registered his 47th consecutive double-double, while Malik Monk took the lead for most career assists by a Sacramento reserve, according to Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee. Sabonis increased his double-double streak to 48 games on Wednesday in an impressive victory over the Lakers that moved the Kings up to sixth in the Western Conference standings.

Kings Waive Robin Lopez

The Kings have officially waived newly acquired center Robin Lopez, as expected, per an announcement from the team.

Sacramento acquired Lopez from Milwaukee in a salary dump deal on Thursday, with the Bucks sending enough cash to the Kings in the trade to make it worth their while. With JaVale McGee and Alex Len already on the roster as backups for starting center Domantas Sabonis, the Kings weren’t interested in hanging onto another veteran big man, preferring to open up that 15th roster spot.

Lopez appeared in 16 games for the Bucks this season, recording just 18 points, five rebounds, and four assists on 7-of-19 shooting in 65 total minutes of action.

Sacramento will eat Lopez’s minimum-salary ($2,019,706) cap hit and he’ll be free to sign with any team except for Milwaukee once he clears waivers.

Pacific Notes: Sabonis, Russell, Allen, Vanderbilt

The Kings appear to be heading in the right direction, winning their last three games. Domantas Sabonis admits the first half of Sacramento’s season was plagued with inconsistency but believes the club’s issues are correctable.

“It’s tough, because we know we are better. We’ve shown it,” he told Sam Amick of The Athletic. “We just sometimes go through these mental lapses in games, which are very, very controllable. We know that. There’s other games where we’ve controlled it and ended up winning the game.

“So we’ve just got to stay mentally strong. We need to win games to get the best seed as we can for the playoffs, but I feel like, as the year goes on, we’re learning more and more, you know? We’re seeing film, seeing what we do wrong. We’re realizing these things. And the good thing is that we still have another (38) games.”

We have more from the Pacific Division:

  • D’Angelo Russell has been fined $15K for kicking the game ball into the spectator stands, the NBA announced (via Twitter). The Lakers guard booted the ball following the conclusion of their 145-144 victory over the Warriors on Saturday.
  • A report from Yahoo Sports last week indicated the Suns are no longer considering the possibility of trading Grayson Allen. The Athletic’s Marcus Thompson and Shams Charania note that there’s good reason to keep Allen. He’s enjoying a career year, shooting 49.8% from beyond the arc this season. He’s also leveled up his defense, rebounding and play-making, The Athletic duo adds. Allen’s night against Miami on Monday was cut short by an ankle injury, Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press tweets.
  • During the past six games, Lakers forward Jarred Vanderbilt is averaging 11.0 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 2.2 steals in 26.5 minutes per night. Coach Darvin Ham was evasive when asked if he’s considering putting Vanderbilt in the starting five but indicated that the finishing unit is even more important, Jovan Buha of The Athletic writes. “It’s not about always starting that way, but you know you’re going to get to it,” Ham said. “Every coach has a finishing six or seven, group of six or seven guys that he knows he can potentially finish with.”