Rajon Rondo didn’t reject 5-year, $70 million contract extension, contrary to report

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The Celtics offered Rajon Rondo a contract extension during the 2013-14 season.

He rejected it.

Before the 2014-15 season, he said he wanted a max contract.

Boston then traded him to the Mavericks.

Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports:

Rondo turned down a five-year extension estimated to pay close to $70 million

Rondo signed a one-year, $9.5 million contract with the Kings last summer – a far cry from $70 million, let alone a max contract (worth $113,211,750 over five years re-signing or$84,072,030 over four years signing elsewhere).

Joke’s on Rondo?

Not exactly.

He couldn’t have signed a five-year, $70 million extension. The Collective Bargaining Agreement forbids it.

Rondo was limited by two factors – his bargain rookie-scale extension and the current CBA’s stiff limit on extensions.

The largest extension the Celtics could’ve given Rondo during the 2013-14 season was $28,795,341 over two years. If they’d waited until last season, they could have offered three years,$44,754,205. But that’s the absolute highest they could have gone.

Rondo will probably never get a max contract, though it didn’t seem unreasonable before his disastrous Dallas stint. But if Rondo continues to play well, he could earn more over the next two seasons than if he’d signed an extension with Boston. A two-year, $35,254,205 contract – the break-even number – for Rondo next offseason seems high, but it’s not completely unreasonable. Remember, the salary cap is skyrocketing, the latest reported projections putting it at $95 million.

As long as Rondo viewed himself as a max player, the Celtics had no choice but to trade him or let his contract expire and hope he picked them in free agency. They opted for the former, a wise move in hindsight.

Just don’t accuse Rondo of erring by using 20/200 hindsight.