With the season barely underway, it's already creeping close to January 25th deadline for teams to extend players.
There are several players under consideration for an extension right now. Some are looking for bigger paydays ahead.
Here are eight players who may or may not extend before the trade deadline but will be getting some massive bucks.
Raymond Felton wants to be in Portland, which has to be a relief to the Trail Blazer faithful.
They [Blazers officials] know I want to be here,” Felton told HOOPSWORLD. “I’ve told them that and we talked about it earlier in the summer so they know that already. I love it here in Portland. I want to be here leading the team. I feel like we have a winning team here, so hopefully we can get something done.
Felton is a rising star, albeit an underrated one in the NBA. Everywhere he's gone he's done nothing but help his team win. He promises to fetch somewhere in the $8-10 million range.
Portland should lock him up and lock him up soon.
JaVale McGee might not be the most mature player in the league, and occasionally we see him do silly things, like dunk-contest dunks with his team losing.
That being said, he's one of the most gifted, athletic seven-footers in the league right now. In a league where the similarly talented DeAndre Jordan just got a $10 million deal, it's not a stretch to think that McGee could get the same.
As of now, the Wizards have not opened up talks about an extension, but they have until January 25 to do so.
Roy Hibbert is looking for an extension. According to David Falk, Hibbert's agent,
"I'm not saying 100 percent we wouldn't do (an extension), but I'd say it's likely," Falk said Friday. "He likes Indiana, it's a great place, it's worked out well. But it's my opinion that generally, these things are hard to do. If I was an owner I wouldn't do one unless I got a discount ..."
Hibbert is a talented center whose game is still growing. He plays both sides of the ball well, and that's a rare commodity in today's NBA.
Eric Gordon was the major trade piece the New Orleans Hornets got in return for their franchise point guard, Chris Paul (which, if you're keeping track, that's two players with two first names each).
According to David Aldridge of NBA.com,
Gordon is in a tough position; with the Hornets currently owned by the NBA, the likelihood of the league okaying a major financial commitment to anyone before the team is sold (Commissioner David Stern maintained last month that that could happen by the spring) is iffy -- especially considering how the league insisted on young, inexpensive players as part of the Chris Paul deal. (Not to mention the fact that the team's other "owners" -- the 28 other teams -- weren't all that happy when New Orleans acquired Carl Landry and his salary last year at the trade deadline.) And Gordon might be reluctant to re-up with New Orleans until the team is sold, if at all. But the two sides are "working on it," a source texted Sunday night.
With all the trouble the Hornets went through to get Gordon, though, it's hard to imagine they don't do everything they can to keep him.
The Portland Trail Blazers were hoping that Gerald Wallace would exercise his $11.437 million extension. That's not going to happen. Rather, he's going to opt out.
He's open to an extension from them, though.
The Blazers had hoped to avoid that potential scenario and in December had casual conversations with agent Rob Pelinka to extend his contract this season. However, under the new CBA, the Blazers can only extend Wallace for two more seasons, down from the four-season option in the previous CBA.
It's possible it's about the years, not the money with Wallace. If he doesn't extend, he can sign for similar money and get more years out of the deal.
Considering he'll be 30 next season, those extra two years could have a lot of value for him.
Danilo Gallinari was one of the key pieces that the Nuggets got out of the Carmelo Anthony trade and they seem intent on keeping him around.
Talks between Gallinari and the Nuggets are "going well," a source said Sunday night, and the Nuggets are hopeful they'll be able to keep Gallinari around just as they've inked Nene and guard Arron Afflalo to long-term deals in the last few weeks. Denver wasn't able to surround Anthony with enough star talent to keep him happy, so the team has pivoted to a new approach -- call it Knicks West -- with Gallinari seemingly replacing Wilson Chandler, who's playing in China this season and will be difficult to re-sign once the Nuggets get Gallinari extended.
This brings up to interesting points. First, Gallinari will probably be re-signed. Second, that means that the Nuggets may not be up to matching any offers on Chandler when he comes back from China.
That could land Chandler on a contender to finish the season. Imagine him on the already-deep Chicago Bulls, who need a veteran small forward to back up Luol Deng.
The latest news on the Kevin Love deal is this:
Six days before the league deadline, the Timberwolves are prepared to pay All-Star forward Kevin Love a maximum-salary contract, a league source said Wednesday. Unresolved is whether it will be a four-year contract approaching $61 million or a maximum five-year "designated player" deal surpassing $78 million.
You could empty out your skull with a melon-scoop and still have enough sense left in it to get this deal done. Love's an extraordinary talent, and those that criticize his defense miss the painfully obvious—the whole team doesn't play defense.
I assure you, with time his defense will be done.
Here's the latest on the Westbrook deal, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook has signed a five-year, $80 million contract extension with the Oklahoma City Thunder, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.
Thunder general manager Sam Presti finalized the deal with Westbrook’s agent, Thad Foucher of Wasserman Media Group, on Wednesday night.
So I guess that takes the drama out of that. I had a whole spiel ready to go about how he should take the $80 million, but he beat me to it.
Westbrook would have been eligible for the "Rose Rule" if he makes the All-Star game this year, which he probably will.
In some way's he's taking "less" than he could have from Oklahoma City, but it would have been hard for the Thunder to give 60 percent of the cap to two players.
At least the whole, "Who is Batman, who is Robin" thing is cleared up now. All Kevin Durant needs to do is point to the paychecks.