There are a lot of contenders, but none of them would match the demands made on a team like Utah.
How much of the money will be going to player salaries?
It seems fair to say that the Jazz plan to spend more than the salary budget of other NBA teams, so there are a lot of dollars coming out of your pocket, but the vast majority will go to player salaries.
The top earners?
The Jazz have the likes of Joe Johnson, Derrick Favors, Marco Belinelli, Derrick Favors and Rudy Gobert on the books now, and if any of the young players hit the open market, I expect those numbers to jump.
Johnson is one of the best defenders on the planet, so it’s not out of the question that he can become the highest paid player in the game.
Favors? He’s been with the team for over a decade and is likely to become another top-three option for the Jazz if he gets healthy. Favors is a huge reason Utah went from last place in the West last season to the Western Conference Finals.
Belinelli? He has been the key to Utah’s success this season, leading the team in defensive rating and scoring nine or more points in half of the games he played in so far this season. Expect to see him on the court in more games this summer, just to give him a chance at a max extension.
Gobert? He’s the most important player on the Utah roster for the foreseeable future. Although he has been hampered by an underwhelming first half in the regular season, he’s been great on the defensive end of the floor when he has played.
Johnson and Favors aren’t likely to get extensions this summer, but I think that could change if they start playing a lot more basketball and the Jazz figure out more ways to get their best players more plays.
How would I calculate each player’s salary?
I’ve used the same formulas I used in the regular season, with one big difference. I’m now using a league-wide average salary across all teams.
It’s almost a certainty that the Jazz will be able to use some of the money to extend their guys sooner and sign others as free agents later this summer.
The only exception I’ve mentioned in the formula above is Rudy Gobert, who is a restricted free agent who was signed via salary arbitration but won’t be eligible for free agency until June 1.
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