If Russell Westbrook signs a maximum-value contract extension and makes the All-NBA team next season, depending on the terms of that extension, he could join the club. But Rose is the only guy who can do it now.
Why? The criteria to be eligible for a second contract with a starting salary capped at 30 percent of the salary cap instead of the normal 25 percent is to win an MVP award, get voted into the All-Star Game as a starter twice or to be named to two All-NBA teams (any level) within the player's first four seasons.
Kevin Love, the third member of the 2008 NBA Draft class's elite core, has one All-NBA nod in three years. Unless he wins the MVP in 2011-12 -- don't put it past him -- he won't be eligible for the 30-percent cap.
The difference is about $3 million per season. Jerry Reinsdorf is no doubt thrilled.
This shall henceforth be known as the Derrick Rose Rule.
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