Tristan Thompson isn’t getting his five-year, max contract from the Cavaliers — so instead he wants a three-year max deal.
Not sure that the Cavaliers will go for this, but Thompson’s aggressive agent Rich Paul apparently wanted to try to spin the story his way with this leak Thursday to Chris Broussard of ESPN:
Great deal? I’m not so sure about that — Thompson isn’t lowering his financial demands, only the number of years. Former Nets executive and Twitter star Bobby Marks put it well.
For the Cavaliers, who are concerned about the steep luxury tax hit that would come with signing Thompson to the max — as well as the fact he’s not worth more than guys such as Draymond Green, nor the same as Kawhi Leonard and Jimmy Butler — this does not alleviate those concerns.
Cleveland doesn’t seem to be biting.
Cleveland has a five-year, $80 million offer on the table — that’s $16 million a year on average — and they are not willing to go higher for the reserve power forward. They aren’t getting pressured by LeBron James. The Cavs are holding their ground. Unlike my colleague Dan Feldman here at PBT, I’m not in the camp that thinks the Cavaliers are okay signing him to a max deal, even with the television money coming in. I’m far from sold he’s the kind of irreplaceable player you throw max money at, and I think that’s the kind of contract they regret in a few years.
The question soon becomes, is Thompson willing to play for the qualifying offer of $6.7 million to be an unrestricted free agent next summer? Is he ready to bet that the flood of television cash in the market will net him a max salary in 2016 that makes up the difference in money he gave up this season?