A lot of players made a lot of money this past offseason in the NBA.
Some deals were expected. Others weren’t, but were sadly going to happen anyway.
Here are a few of the deals I think are too large, too insane and won’t work out. These don’t go in any specific order.
- Jrue Holiday, five years, $126 million: The New Orleans Pelican surely dished out the cash for Holiday, who has averaged only 6.2 assists per game in eight seasons. Holiday is often one of the most-injured point guards in the NBA. He hasn’t played all 82 games since his second season in the league (2010-11) and has missed 122 games over the past four seasons. When healthy, Holiday is a suitable point guard, but his health has been his biggest issue. At age 26, he played 67 games last season. Hopefully he is healthy so the Pelican can get their money back on this deal. If he continues to get hurt, it’ll be a huge waste of money.
- Otto Porter, four years, $106 million: What were the Wizards supposed to do? Let one of their most reliable options from beyond the arc sign a deal with the Nets? Washington matched Brooklyn’s offer sheet for Porter, who is limited offensively and an average defender. Porter had his best season when it mattered most. He averaged 13.4 points per game and shot 43.4 percent from three, making nearly two attempts per game. I think Porter is a solid role player, but at four years and over $100 million, Washington will never get its value for this deal. The Wizards were pressured into this deal.
- Tim Hardaway Jr., four years, $71 million: The New York Knicks got rid of Hardaway Jr., only to bring him back at over $17 million a season for the next four years. Doesn’t make much or any sense to me, however, he is coming off his best season in his career. New York’s roster is in rough shape and it is thin at the guard spots. Hardaway Jr. should get plenty of opportunities to shine, but this is a lot of money for a guy who started just 30 games for the Atlanta Hawks, who were also thin at guard last season. Ultimately, I think he can prove his worth more so than the previous two names.
- James Johnson, four years, $60 million: Johnson had his best season — an average one at that — and he turned it into $15 million per year over the next four. At age 29, Johnson averaged 12.8 points and 4.9 rebounds for the Miami Heat in 2016-17. With Miami trying to compete for the playoffs, I think this is a contract that hinders the Heat. While a lot of average players are getting big money with the increased salary cap, Johnson’s one good season in a total of nine, it’s more of unfortunate coincidence than something that will keep happening, especially once Miami’s roster is back to full strength.
- Jeff Teague/George Hill, three years, $57 million: Both Teague and Hill got monster contracts, despite being older point guards. Hill is more in a leadership role being with Sacramento, while Teague will be just a piece on Minnesota’s roster. I certainly think both players won’t play up to their paid value, but that’s just me. Sadly, that’s the going rate for veteran point guards. I expect Hill to have more of an impact in Sacramento. Teague will be the fourth option on a team that includes, Jimmy Butler, Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.