Stephen Curry is the definition of a max player — two-time MVP, 25.5 points per game scorer, All-NBA player, All-Star, the leader who sets the tone and culture for the two-time champions, and a fan favorite who packs buildings in Oakland and on the road. Last summer, Curry was coming off a contract that was one of the steals of the NBA, he made $12.1 million the season before, and it was time for him to get paid like a superstar.
Warriors owner Joe Lacob was going to low-ball Curry with an offer anyway.
Golden State GM Bob Myers talked him out of it, according to The Athletic’s Marcus Thompson II in his new Curry biography, “Golden: The Miraculous Rise of Steph Curry.”
As the Warriors prepared for the postseason, Warriors owner Joe Lacob was considering offering Curry a contract below the max, even though Curry has been one of the most underpaid players in all of sports over the last three seasons. Warriors general manager Bob Myers kept Lacob from bringing a reduced offer to the negotiating table, but it was enough of a thing that Myers reassured Curry of the franchise’s commitment….
Curry knew there were mumblings of possibly asking him to take less than the max. He brushed it off as meaningless until it was actually time to sign. The last thing he wanted was his contract becoming a storyline and possible distraction during the playoffs.
Lacob must have been wearing his Bad Idea Jeans. Well done by Curry to ignore it during a run to the NBA title.
You can be sure Lacob will deny this soon, but these are the kinds of things that happen in organizations — and in the best ones the owner (or other person with the terrible idea) is talked out of it by someone with the security to say no to power.
Next summer, Kevin Durant will opt out and want to be maxed out. The summer after that it’s Klay Thompson (although maybe he takes a discount). The one after that it’s Draymond Green. At what point does Lacob and the ownership balk at the price tag (and tax, which with salary will top $300 million in a couple of years)? The league is wondering, and it’s stories like this that make you think there will be a breaking point down the line.