Much was made of Golden State’s unwillingness to include Klay Thompson in a package to Minnesota for Kevin Love this summer. With Love now in Cleveland, Thompson’s agent, Bill Duffy, is trying to get a max contract extension for a client he calls “the best two-way two-guard” in the NBA today.
According to CSNBayArea.com’s Monte Poole, the two sides remain $2-3 million apart. Poole reports the Warriors are stuck at around $13 million per year, while Love and Duffy want at least $15 million per year, or a max deal, which would be close to $16 million per season.
Marcus Thompson of the Bay Area News Group, says Klay and agent Duffy don’t want any discounts on an extension, which could mean they’re unwilling to even sign for $15 million per, if it’s even a dollar under the max:
Despite Golden State’s reluctance to include Klay in any deal for Love, Thompson was reportedly “pissed” they even mulled an offer. Now, with owner Joe Lacob staying firm at $13 million a year in negotiations, it further strains relations, especially when you consider they would have had to pay Love a max deal if they were going to keep him beyond the 2014-15 season (Love is opting out this summer).
On the Flip (Saunders) side, league sources were “adamant” with Poole that the Timberwolves GM and coach was prepared to offer Klay a max extension if he were able to pry him away from Golden State in a Love trade.
Combine that knowledge with Klay’s peers and it gets even more ludicrous Golden Golden State’s brass doesn’t appear likely to pay Klay. This summer Chandler Parsons signed a three-year, $46 million offer sheet with the Mavs and the Jazz matched Charlotte’s four-year $63 million deal to retain Gordon Hayward. Both players were the last players cut from Team USA this summer while Klay made the team and thrived on their way to a gold in Spain.
Poole mentions that owner Joe Lacob is unwiling to do a max deal because he wants to avoid paying luxury taxes. Except, they might have to pay a tax even at $13 million a year, and with the new TV-rights deal just around the corner, signing Klay to a max deal now could look frugal in just a couple years time. That is if the NBA and the NBPA don’t find a way to smooth-over the significant increase in the salary cap after the new money rolls in folllowing the 2016-17 season.
According to Poole, Warriors executive board member Jerry West and new coach Steve Kerr were the primary forces in keeping Klay with the Warriors this summer when the ‘Wolves talks became more serious. Now, they’re in danger of losing Klay to free agency next summer if he declines his laughable ($4.2 million) qualifying offer for the 2015-16 season.
Just another case of a team trying to pinch pennies to avoid the tax, only to possibly lose out on one-half of their famed Splash Brothers backcourt.
Is Klay worth a max extension?
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