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NBA Rumors: Faried’s Deal Gets Redone

Kenneth Faried signs a four-year, reworked deal… Ray Allen still undecided… Wesley Johnson not seriously injured…

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Faried’s deal gets restructured

After a closer examination of collective bargaining agreement fine print with the NBA on Monday morning, the fact that five-year deals on rookie extensions are only allowable for maximum contracts ultimately moved the sides toward reconstructing the extension.

Nevertheless, the sides found common ground on a $12.5 million annual deal that keeps Faried out of the restricted free-agent market in July 2015 when the possibility of Faried signing a richer offer sheet could’ve been painful for Denver to match.

via Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports

Faried’s camp probably worked long and hard to secure that fifth year, which would have been his highest-paid year of the deal assuming it was ascending like most contracts. While this deal is for less money overall, Faried’s getting an extra half million per than he originally agreed to and has the added appeal of hitting the free agent market a year earlier. Now he’ll be unrestricted in 2019, when the league’s smoothing of the salary cap could be close to peaking. He’ll be 28 years of age then, still young enough to secure another long-term deal, as long as he continues producing at his current rate, when the league’s average salary could be $2 million higher than it is now.

This deal is good for the Nuggets as well. They paid potentially a little less than what he would have received as a restricted free agent next summer, based off of the way he closed off last season and performed with Team USA this summer in the FIBA World Championships. With this distraction out of the way, the Nuggets also won’t have to worry about Faried being effected by uncertainty. He attributed some of his early season struggles last year to being involved in trade rumors, but there’s no questioning now that he is a serious part of the Nuggets who won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.

Ray Allen still undecided

via Twitter

It seems like every couple of weeks a report about Allen making his return surfaces, but they continually get shot down and this case is no different. Allen is at a unique stage that very few players experience. The demand for him is greater than his interest to play at the moment. After all, he has a family he wants to spend more time with and has nothing left to prove. He’s a first ballot Hall of Famer if he never plays a game again.

However, Allen does love the game of basketball and perhaps more importantly, is very competitive and capable of contributing still. He has a slew of contenders that would make room for him at a moment’s notice, but the Cavaliers continue to be looked at as the favorite to land his services, should he return, largely thanks to the LeBron James’ connection. As Cavaliers GM David Griffin has said before, he’s the league’s best recruiter. He’s already helped bring in some key veterans like James Jones, Mike Miller and Shawn Marion. Allen would fit in perfectly on this Cavaliers squad, and the potential to compete for another championship could be too great for him to pass on. The Cavaliers have the depth to get by without Allen, but would love to have him come playoff time. As long as Allen decides he wants to play before the deadline to be eligible for the playoffs, they’ll welcome him with open arms.

Wesley Johnson avoids injury after a scare

via Twitter

Johnson was pulled from the Lakers’ preseason opener late in the second half after experiencing some knee pain that stemmed from some light contact. The Lakers have already lost Nick Young (torn thumb ligament) for up to eight weeks, and couldn’t afford to lose Johnson as well. Luckily, they’ve finally managed to avoid an injury after having some really bad luck with them the past two years. Johnson has been one of the most talked about players during Lakers’ camp, with rave reviews about how much he improved over the offseason. Johnson spent a lot of time working out with Kobe Bryant and is being tapped as the team’s defensive stopper.

Johnson, the fourth overall pick in the 2010 draft, has never quite developed as hoped. He’s been solid, especially defensively, but nowhere near what a team drafting fourth overall would hope for. If he doesn’t come into his own with the Lakers, at 27 years of age, he risks teams giving up on him becoming anything more than he is right now. It’s not make-or-break, but it’s close, too close to be dealing with any kind of serious injuries.

Yannis Koutroupis is Basketball Insiders' Managing Site Editor and Senior Writer. He has been covering the NBA and NCAA for seven years.

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