The Bucks reached a buyout deal with Larry Sanders a couple of weeks ago, after Sanders needed time off for both personal reasons and league-mandated suspensions for violating the drug policy earlier this season.
There were different numbers reported as to just how much Milwaukee would be on the hook for, and for how long.
But we now have some clarity on the matter, and it looks as though the Bucks will choose to take as long as allowed under the league’s collective bargaining agreement to financially sort things out.
In recent days, league sources claim the Bucks will use every year they are allotted under the NBA’s “stretch provision.” And that means the Bucks will pay Sanders in annual increments of approximately $1.9 million over a seven-year period. That amount will be applied to the Bucks’ salary cap each season through the 2021-2022 season.
The stretch provision allows teams to make their payments for twice the number of years remaining on a contract, plus an additional year. Sanders has three years remaining on his contract.
Sanders, who was twice suspended by the NBA for drug infractions – last season for five games and 10 games this season – will thus collect about $22 million – or half of his original $44 million deal.
It’s a small hit in terms of the actual cap space the agreement will take up, but it will be a long and painful reminder that the team gave Sanders too much too soon, when some signs were there that could have indicated that this might not have been the wisest of decisions.
Bucks general manager John Hammond and Bucks owner Herb Kohl made the egregious decision to give Sanders a contract extension in August of 2013.
It immediately brought wide-spread disbelief around the NBA, especially considering Sanders had only one quality season with the Bucks, had several run-ins with teammates and still had another season remaining on his contract before he became a restricted free agent.
Sanders reportedly has no interest in pursuing basketball at this time, as he looks to get his personal life in order first.