With all of the contract extensions and trades so far, which move will be the most significant in the NBA? Will we see Kevin Durant swap teams again? Will Nikola Jokic live up to his new super max deal?
The NBA has seen a whopping $2.6 billion in contracts over the past couple of weeks. The explosion in new money is in part a result of the elevated $123.6 million salary cap announced early last week. The cap moved hardly at all in the last couple of years due to decreased revenue from COVID-19.
This might be one of the most active offseasons in NBA history. From record-breaking contracts to trades for superstars, we have seen it all. That being said, there is plenty to unpack here. Let’s discuss some of the biggest deals so far this summer.
Nikola Jokic Signs NBA Record Contract Extension
The biggest news so far has been the NBA record contract signed by Nikola Jokic. Jokic signed a five-year, $264 million supermax extension with the Nuggets. Jokic is coming off his second consecutive MVP award and is the face of the Nuggets franchise. This $264 million deal is the largest/richest contract in NBA history.
Jokic has a career stat line of 19.7 points, 10.4 rebounds, and 6.2 assists per game. 2021-22 was his best year considering he averaged 27 points, 13 rebounds, and 7 assists. Jokic has become a true nightmare for any post player that has to guard him. Jokic has improved every year in the NBA and now he’s being paid like it. Jokic’s contract broke the previous record held by Giannis Antetokounmpo (five-year, $228 million). Like Jokic, he was a back-to-back MVP at the time and now Jokic has followed that path.
Bradley Beal And Zion Williamson Also Break Giannis’ Contract Record
Bradley Beal and Zion Williamson also signed huge contracts that keep them in Washington and New Orleans long-term. Beal signed a five-year, $251 million deal easily passing Giannis and showing the Wizards confidence in Beal moving forward. Zion signing a huge deal came as no surprise considering how much New Orleans has already invested in him. Williams inked a five-year, $231 million deal and it could be higher than that based on incentives.
Celtics Trade for Brogdon, Hawks Trade Wings With Kings
One of the biggest trades so far this offseason was the Celtics dishing out Daniel Theis, Aaron Nesmith, Nik Stauskas, Malik Fitts, Juwan Morgan, and a 2023 first-round pick to the Pacers for Malcolm Brogdon. Brogdon brings more versatility to Boston that could help them get over the hump in the NBA Finals should they make it back. Brogdon will help spread the floor and provide yet another dynamic scorer despite already having Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, and Marcus Smart.
Also in the East, the Hawks traded Kevin Huerter to the Kings for Justin Holiday, Mo Harkless, and a future first-round pick. Huerter will provide a solid three-point shooter for Sacramento but the Hawks get more veteran depth and a potential solid draft pick. This trade might not be the most exciting one but it’ll change these team’s landscapes for sure.
NBA Free Agency 2022 Has Seen Big Money
To sum up how insane this free agency period and offseason has been so far, listen to this. Six of the ten largest contracts of all time were handed out in 24 hours. Out of all the contracts signed, nine contracts were over $100 million, and seven were over $200 million. All of those were extension deals but the only contract deal that saw a team change was Jalen Brunson leaving the Mavericks and signing his four-year $104 million deal with the Knicks.
With big names like Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and Deandre Ayton still being discussed for trades and contract extensions, the madness is not done yet. If we see Kevin Durant land elsewhere it will require a huge haul of players and draft picks. This could be one of the best offseasons in NBA history and so far, I think it has been the best one ever.
Which offseason deal or trade so far has been your favorite? Comment below and join the discussion!
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