NBA Lockout Deal Increases Potential Maximum Salary For Young Players

Under the NBA lockout deal reached Saturday morning, players with six or fewer years of service in the league can sign contracts with a maximum first-year salary equal to 25 percent of the salary cap, or roughly $14.5 million for the 2011-12 season. But if that player has already made the All-Star or All-NBA team, he can sign a deal that pays him 30 percent in the first year of his second contract, which is also the max for players with more than six seasons of service.

This will affect young players signing their second contracts, usually following their third seasons. (This contracts go into effect after the players' fourth season.) In the immediate, it will come into play for Derrick Rose, Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook, each of whom have finished three seasons and have All-Star appearances on their resumes.

Under the old rules and assuming the salary cap, as reported, remains static at $58 million, those players should be able to sign extensions starting at $17.4 million. By contrast, Kevin Durant last year signed a deal that this year will pay him $14.5 million. Westbrook (a year behind Durant in service) making more than the two-time reigning scoring champ should go over well in Oklahoma City.

UPDATE: Westbrook might actually not be affected by this, as the deal apparently restricts the so-called bonus pool to players who have achieved two All-NBA bids, two All-Star starting nods or an MVP award. Of players up for rookie extensions this summer, only Rose would be affected.

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