De’Anthony Melton’s extension
In the current CBA, players eligible for an extension are limited to 120% of the player’s previous salary or 120% of the estimated player average salary, whichever is greater. In the new CBA, players can now get 140% of their previous salary in an extension. It isn’t clear whether an extension can also be signed for 140% of the estimated player average salary, but let’s assume it is. Melton’s 2023-24 salary is $8 million, so with a 140% increase in starting salary, Melton would have a starting salary of $11.2 million and ultimately receive a four year contract worth $50.2 million dollars.
That likely would not sway Melton to sign an extension because he could test free agency and get more money from the Sixers or another suitor. According to Eric Pincus, the estimated average player salary going into the 2022-23 season was $10.7 million. While there won’t be a definitive average player salary until the 2024-25 season, I’m just going to throw out the number of $12 million as an estimate given a $140.7 million projected salary cap for that season. If that’s the case, then Melton could sign a deal starting at $16.8 million and worth a total of four years of roughly $75.5 million. While the extension based on the 140% of Melton’s $8 million salary may not be enough to get the deal done, the 140% of the average player salary should be sufficiently in the ballpark of what Melton could expect in regard to a payday.
The idea behind the new CBA is to essentially level out the playing field between the larger market teams with ownership that traditionally spends more money, such as the Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Clippers, and the smaller market teams that aren’t big spenders. For years, I’ve reiterated that an ownership that’s willing to pay deep into the luxury tax is the biggest competitive advantage in the NBA. It’ll be interesting to see how much teams are deterred from such penalties that the league is going to be implementing.
As the Sixers avoided the luxury tax threshold this year, that scenario changes next year if James Harden re-signs. If Harden doesn’t re-sign, then the Sixers have a bit more flexibility to add talent to replace him. After that impressive game one against the Celtics, I think we can all agree we’d welcome him back with open arms and deal with the repercussions later. Thanks for reading and go Sixers!