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NBA Rumors: Klay Thompson Wants Early Max Extension

Klay Thompson wants the max before Oct. 31 and more of the top rumors from 9/15/14!



Check out the biggest rumors of the day in our NBA Rumor Round-Up. For more rumors and news, check out Basketball Insiders’ headlines, which are constantly being updated.

Thompson wants maximum extension early

Thompson and the Warriors have until Oct. 31 to agree on an extension that would ensure the “Splash Brothers,” as he and All-Star point guard Stephen Curry have been dubbed, are in the same pool for years to come. Failing to reach a deal would mean he’ll become a restricted free agent next summer, a scenario that Thompson and his agent, Bill Duffy, would prefer to avoid.

Yet Duffy is widely known to be demanding a maximum contract that the Warriors would prefer not to pay. His reasoning? He sees Thompson as the best shooting guard in the game

via Sam Amick of USA Today Sports

There was a contingent of the Golden State Warriors front office, including Jerry West and Steve Kerr, that did not want to include Klay Thompson in a trade for Kevin Love. Love is set to receive a five-year, max dollar extension from the Cavaliers when he becomes a free agent next summer.

The members of the Warriors front office that are going to be deciding what their offer to Thompson will be, ownership and the recently-extended Bob Myers, who were a little bit more open to letting him go for Love.

Thompson has steadily progressed into one of the league’s elite shooting guards and a true two-way player who impacts the game in a similar fashion on both ends of the court. However, the Warriors already have $56 million in guaranteed contracts on the books for next season, and a max extension for Thompson will severely impact their financial flexibility in the future. If they could get him for a little bit less than the max, like they did with Stephen Curry, that would be ideal for them.

Based off of the sizeable amount of money that they’re committing, the Warriors would be better off waiting to sign Thompson and making sure that he proves he’s worth the max this year, since they’re at no risk of losing him (unless they chose to) as he can only become a restricted free agent if they don’t come to terms before October 31.

If Thompson indeed is only willing to take the max, then he’s going to have to accept that he may have a little bit more work to do before the franchise is willing to make that kind of commitment to him. If signing early his priority, though, he should be receiving an offer somewhere in the $11-13 million range that is worth considering, even if it’s short of the max.

Baynes on the trade block

via Twitter

The Spurs currently have a qualifying offer of just over $1.1 million on the table for Baynes, but really lack room for him in the rotation. Baynes, as Spears mentioned, is coming off of a strong summer, has proven that he’s a certifiable NBA player, and is likely looking for more money and opportunity than the Spurs can provide him this upcoming season.

Unfortunately for Baynes, he may end up back in San Antonio on that one-year qualifying offer since there’s just not a big trade market out there for him right now. The Spurs have invested a lot of time in developing him and are not ready to just let him walk away for nothing, hence why they issued the qualifying offer, so Baynes may have to fight for minutes again and just bide his time for an opportunity in 2014-15.

International age limit coming?

After the 2016 Olympics in Rio, the World Cup of Basketball and Olympic Games are destined to become an under-22 developmental tournament.

“We need to get our vets out and move our younger players in,” one NBA general manager told Yahoo Sports. “The support’s there for the change, and it’s getting stronger.”

via Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports

The number being thrown around right now for international play is 22 and under, which would still allow for NBA players to participate, just the young stars of the league, and likely more top-tier collegiate players as well.

This has been talked about for quite some time, and with USA’s undefeated streak now spanning eight years, it could be time to make things a little bit more interesting by leveling the playing field. While some will point towards the Paul George injury as the reasoning for this change, it’s much more about making the FIBA product more competitive and enjoyable to follow.

Team USA’s World Cup victory did not draw the kind of attention that warrants top-dollar NBA players risking injury during the summer, but if it were a showcase of some of the best international and domestic talent heading to the NBA, it could draw a lot more attention.

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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