When Kyrie Irving signed a five-year rookie extension with the Cleveland Cavaliers earlier in July, it was reported that it was a maximum contract. It turns out Irving did not quite receive the full deal, reports Dan Feldman of ProBasketballTalk.
Citing salary data from Mark Deeks of ShamSports.com, Feldman reports that if Irving wins the MVP award or is elected a starter at the All-Star game next season, he will only receive 27.5 percent of an adjusted NBA salary cap, rather than the 30 percent that represents the max and the so-called Derrick Rose Rule.
Irving's contract does not begin until 2015-16 -- he has one year remaining on his rookie contract -- and comes with an option to opt-out after four seasons.
The exact amount of money involved won't be known until the NBA salary cap for the 2015-16 season is set, but Feldman breaks down how it would work if the projected salary cap of $66.3 million happens:
If Irving neither wins MVP or gets voted an All-Starter, his contract extension will be worth the max possible amount (about $89 million). If he achieves either of those honors, he’d gain about $9 million. However, he could have gained more than $16 million.
By leaving that potential $7 million on the table, Irving set himself up to become a free agent sooner, 2019 rather than 2020.
Irving, the 2012 NBA Rookie of the Year, started the 2014 All-Star game and was named the game's MVP.
Mark Deeks points out that two other players who were reported to have max deals technically didn't receive it either.
Here's one for the pedantry fans - Parsons and Melo didn't receive the max. Melo received 96.07% of it, while Parsons received 99.69% of it, — Mark Deeks (@MarkDeeksNBA) July 27, 2014
- Molly Geary