Paul George, one of the top-10 players in the sport, could sign a contract extension with the Indiana Pacers next week, per several league sources.
George, who doesn’t hit free agency until 2018, will have the option of restructuring his contract on September 25. According to a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) regulation, players can restructure their contracts based off the current salary cap.
This offseason, James Harden, Russell Westbrook and most recently Giannis Antetokounmpo have all extended their stints with their respective teams while increasing their salaries for the forthcoming season.
Unlike Harden and Westbrook, George doesn’t fall under the 7-9 max bracket, meaning the Pacers can restructure his deal based on the current cap space.
By doing signing an extension this fall, George stands to leave millions of dollars on the table. However, George can have a much bigger pay day by waiting until next July.
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Paul George to wait until next July?
According to Real GM’s Andrew Perna, the Pacers can explore other options to ensure George stays put in Indiana at least until 2020.
“Indiana can increase his (George’s) salary over the next three years while also signing him to a one-year extension contingent on him opting in for the final year of his current deal. That would keep him under contract through 2020 at a rate of more than $22 million,” wrote the NBA insider.
It would make more financial sense for George to agree to only one additional year (he has a player option for 2018-19) while increasing his salary for the remaining years on the contract signed in 2013.
Last month, Bob Kravitz of WTHR reported that George and the Pacers have held preliminary talks about a contract extension this fall.
Paul George told me here in Rio there have been some initial talks about a contract extension with the Pacers, but nothing extensive.
— Bob Kravitz (@bkravitz) August 4, 2016
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According to this Hoops Habit report, George has some important decisions to make over the next week or so.
“George has two options: Make a long-term commitment to Indiana and surpass Reggie Miller as the greatest Pacer ever, or simply wait until the summer of 2018 to re-evaluate his future.
“Despite all their offseason moves, the Pacers have nearly $6 million left in cap space – enough to upgrade George’s contract to the current max for the 2016-17 season.”
By increasing his salary for the next few seasons, Pacers would show their commitment towards George. But would George repay that faith by agreeing to a few additional years on his contract?
Paul George averaged a career-high tally of 23.1 points and 6.2 rebounds last season. In many people’s eyes, George could be a legitimate candidate to win MVP this season.
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