If you read that headline and said “no $*#*!@ing way” then two things are clear: You have forgotten how much the salary cap is about to spike, and you haven’t watched Evan Fournier play this season.
The fourth-year Magic shooting guard out of France is averaging 16.3 points per game, shooting 39.1 percent from three, and has pushed Victor Oladipo to the bench in Orlando because Fournier has flat-out been better. When paired with Channing Frye at the four the Magic’s new starters are outscoring opponents by 14.4 points per 100 possessions, he’s a better defender than Oladipo, and Scott Skiles trusts him.
People around the league have noticed Fournier, realize he is a restricted free agent, and the man is about to get PAID. From the brilliant Zach Lowe of ESPN.
Fournier’s agents asked for big money in extension talks — well north of $10 million per season, sources say — but the Magic may end up regretting their decision to let him go into restricted free agency.
A solid starter in the new world order of the television money that will flood the NBA market this summer is expected to be closer to $11-$12 million a year. Fournier is a solid starter — and some team with cap space (meaning anyone) may offer to pay him more.
On the latest PBT Podcast Dan Feldman and I had a short discussion of how crazy this summer will be — I think it will be a little crazier than he does. But the kind of guys who are going to benefit from that cash in the system are players such as Fournier.