Victor Oladipo Talks Rockets' Reported 2-Year, $45.2M Contract Extension Offer

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistMarch 2, 2021

Houston Rockets' Victor Oladipo drives in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

Houston Rockets star Victor Oladipo addressed his reported two-year, $45.2 million contract offer from the team, saying the Rockets viewed the offer as a gesture of good faith.

Following the team's 101-90 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday, Oladipo said the Rockets didn't expect him to agree to the deal but that the effort was to show how they valued him:

Mark Berman @MarkBermanFox26

Victor Oladipo on being offered a two-year extension by the Rockets awhile back that he didn’t accept: “They came at me with the offer. It was more so along the lines ‘we know you’re not going to accept it, but we still want you to understand we want you here.’ It was more so...” https://t.co/AoIhnbi2i3

Adam Spolane @AdamSpolane

Victor Oladipo confirmed the Rockets offered him an extension "awhile ago". Said the team offered it knowing he wouldn't accept. It was more of a "we want you" gesture. Rockets knew he would turn it down because the two-year, $45.2 million extension was the max they could offer. https://t.co/7tsfu1LCpR

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski broke news of the deal Sunday and noted it was the most the team could put on the table before the conclusion of the regular season.

A max offer for the two-time All-Star can rise to four years and $113 million prior to free agency. Once he's on the market, he could sign a four-year, $151 million or five-year, $195 million pact with Houston.

Oladipo's performance with the Rockets and Indiana Pacers this season hasn't matched the level he reached when he looked like one of the league's most dynamic 2-guards. Through 23 games, he is averaging 19.4 points, 4.5 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game but is shooting 40.1 percent from the field and 32.4 percent from beyond the arc.

Still, the 2021 free-agent class won't be very deep, especially in the event Kawhi Leonard signs an extension with the Los Angeles Clippers. Even if he doesn't land a max contract, Oladipo should get a better deal than a two-year commitment that averages $22.6 million.

While the Rockets may have indicated to the 28-year-old they'd like to keep him around, Houston could also trade him before the March 25 deadline.

On Feb. 6, ESPN's Tim Bontemps mentioned another move for Oladipo could loom on the horizon. And on the most recent installment of his Hoop Collective podcast, Brian Windhorst of ESPN referenced "chatter" that Oladipo could be back on the market (via HoopsHype).

Wojnarowski reported the Rockets were "yet to engage with teams on trade talks involving Oladipo." Perhaps that stance will change, as Houston has now lost 12 games in a row.