Kyrie Irving can give you 86 million reasons why he shouldn’t sign an extension with the Celtics this summer.
Irving is in the same boat that both Klay Thompson and Draymond Green found themselves in — leaks come from somewhere about how their teams want to sign them to an extension next summer. Of course the teams would, it would save them tens of millions of dollars and get star players under control earlier. The question is why a player would want to do that (and no, Irving’s injury concerns do not override 86 million).
Irving put it this way to Chris Forsberg of ESPN.
Let me put it this way: Irving’s max extension would be $102 million over five years if he opts in, if he opts out the extension jumps to $104 million. However, play out next season and become a free agent in 2019 and his max projects to be about $188 million over five years. For those of you scoring at home, that’s $86 million and one more guaranteed year if he waits. Even if Irving left for another team, he could make $137 million over four years.
Why would Irving take that much less money exactly? He wouldn’t.
Irving the free agent comes with a real risk for the Celtics that Irving bolts in the summer of 2019, a risk they would love to avoid. So of course Danny Ainge will ask. But Irving isn’t about to agree to that. Nor should he.