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Contract Killers

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Contract Killers

I'm of the belief, one of the most cancerous things that can happen to an NBA team is a horrible contract. My years as a Pistons fan were brutal with Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva sucking up all the cap-space for 5 years each! To make matters worse it was one of the first deals made IN THE SUMMER OF LEBRON. Easily one of Joe Dumars's biggest blunders as a GM. At the time I thought those were 2 of the worst contracts in the league.

So who has the worst contracts for 2013/2014 and why? I'm interested to hear some opinions. Mind you the salary cap for 2013/2014 is 58,679 million.

http://espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine

Here's a list of my top 5 least favorite and why:

TIAGO SPLITTER: (10,000,000mil/4 years) Lets start with the fact that I don't think Tiago Splitter is worth 10mil in the first place. That's probably twice more than I'd give him, and for 4 years!? He's already 28 (so much for upside) and in a few years when San Antonio should be looking to rebuild he'll be harder to move.

GERALD WALLACE: (10,105,855mil/3 years) Kind of the opposite of Splitter. Boston is already in rebuilding mode and Wallace's contract has 2 years before it even has expiration value. In the mean time they get a 31 year old, declining small forward. I'll pass.

ERIC GORDON: (14,283,844mil/3 years) New Orleans took a gamble on him but I don't think, even at his best, he deserved this contract. Not only is he undersized for his position but he's 24 going on 48 years old. I'm not sure if this is his contract or his hospital bill.

AMAR'E STOUDEMIRE: (21,679,893mil/2 years) You could put together a solid argument during his contracts first year (the Knick's were a poor franchise and he was a franchise player) but I would still beg to differ. Now, with the additions they've made and his current level of production (when healthy) I'd rather save a bunch of money by switching to Geico.

JOE JOHNSON: (21,466,130mil/3 years) I knew Atlanta messed up the moment they put that outlandish contract on the table. He's already 29 and will not be better then he is now. Maybe a team starved of talent (The Bobcats) could be somewhat justified offering him that contract but the Hawks had J Smooth and Al Horford to build off of at the time. Personally, I would've traded him for a dollar and a dream.

Anyways lets hear some of yours. No wrong answers, its all opinion.


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I disagree with Tiago

I disagree with Tiago Splitter. He's durable, plays really well off of Timmy (didn't in the past), they're an elite defensive squad when he's on the floor, and who knows who the Spurs get if they let Tiago go.

They could've made a weird chase for Josh Smith with their cap room, but Splitter is a great plan B. He might not be as good of a player at 30 or 31 than he is right now, but it's hard to see him declining all that much barring an unlucky injury. There's a big difference between Gerald Wallace in his low 30s and someone like Splitter who relies much less on athleticism.

Contracts are easier to move when there are less years left on them, so I completely disagree with Splitter being harder to move later than now. As far as how much he's being paid, I'd much rather pay Tiago Splitter $8 million versus 10, but centers are usually a couple million more than they really are and, like someone mentioned in a similar thread I posted, I'd rather pay Tiago 10 than DeAndre Jordan for example. I'd also take him over JaVale McGee, another player who earns $10 million.

I'd rather replace Splitter with Kendrick Perkins, whose contract is cheaper but has been a part of so many ramifications with OKC's present and future. It's safe to say Splitter's contract will not be a similar case.

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Someone sounds like a Spurs

Someone sounds like a Spurs fan, lol. You would seriously take Tiago Splitter over DeAndre Jordan or JaVale McGee? Agree to disagree. If the Spurs were offered either for Splitter they'd would be fools not take take it based off sheer upside. If anyone could get through to them it's Greg Popovich (just as he did with Splitter). So who would you say has a bad contract? I'll admit the Josh Smith signing was weird. Not sure I like it...

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Definitely not a Spurs homer,

Definitely not a Spurs homer, I'd just rather take the more established player when paying that kind of $. Why pay $10 million for what could be than what's already there? It's been two years since Jordan signed a new contract and he's noticeably regressed each year in the playoffs and has made little improvement in the regular season (some of that can be blamed on VDN though). He also can't play in 4th quarters of close games and his defense, like JaVale's, is overrated. One player's career highlight involves dunking over a point guard while the other is one of Shaq's favorite players for the wrong reasons. I'd rather have Splitter over those two guys for a team that's making yet another run at a title.

There are plenty of bad contracts in the NBA though. A simple one is Andris Biedrins, but it's an expiring one that helped Golden State land Iguodala, so at least at that point it had some nice value for the Warriors.

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I'd thought about Biedrins!

I'd thought about Biedrins! He almost took it but when a contract is on its last year its usually more of a plus than a minus. Otherwise I'd change the first 3 (maybe the whole thing). I don't think the dunk over Knight over Shaqtin a fool should sway a decision on trading for a player. I just think Splitter is a average basketball player who looks good in Pop's system.

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splitter had a life before

splitter had a life before the nba... he was one of the most dominant big man in europe and spain.

so he 's not an "average" player who "looks" good in pop's system. He's a solid player... overpaid as every big man.

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I don't know any sane person

I don't know any sane person who'd pick DeAndre Jordan over Tiago, DeAndre is the most overrated player in the league by far, he's a slightly above average rebounder, good shot blocker, and flashy dunker......and that's about it. He shoots free throws at 37%, isn't a very disciplined defender, doesn't have any semblance of any sort of post game, absolutely no midrange shot, and you can't trust him for anything late in games when the game slows down because he can't shoot free throws. or make a shot outside of a dunk or layup. Whereas Tiago shoots almost as high a percentage from the field as DeAndre does, shoots free throws literally 2 times better, and is much better defender. If you need a bucket, you can trust Tiago to give you consistent production, whereas you can't say the same about DeAndre. I'm sorry but it's not even close between the two.

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Edit: OKC's probablyyyy still

Edit: OKC's probablyyyy still in some cap trouble even without Perk, but his paycheck is just a tad high for how useful he is against any team that doesn't have Dwight Howard

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I agree with all of them but

I agree with all of them but Splitter and Eric Gordon...

With Splitter, youre acting like 28 is old and he cant improve. This isnt NBA 2k, hes only been in the NBA for a couple years and hes a very skilled big, which is hard to find. He also fits their system perfectly. I dont think 10 million a year is going to ruin your team's plans for the future.

And with Eric Gordon, why are you giving up on him already? He has battled some injuries but honestly, name me 5-10 better shooting guards in the league...Not to mention hes only 24 years old!

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I don't think Splitter is

I don't think Splitter is old. I just don't think, given his age, he has any upside. San Antonio is getting old. For me, I already don't think he's worth 10mil but 4 years means you're kinda stuck with him, at least for while. His was the best of the 5 but I still wouldn't give him 10mil a year. Maybe on a 2 year deal.

Eric Gordon has sat most of his 2 years in New Orleans. He's always been injury prone is my biggest problem. If he was durable I'd be more inclined to offer that contract ...but reluctant.

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...

Splitter is overpaid?

Let's see.

Skilled big-man? Check.

Good pick and roll defender? Check.

Good post defender? Check.

Can he pass out of the post and not be a ball-stopper? Yes.

Mid-range shooting? Yup.

Game based more on skill, not athleticism? Check.

Excellent complement to Timmy, who's more of a defensive C at this point in his career? Yes.

I'd willingly pay $10 mil for a solid big man like Splitter. Even the contract won't be as hard to swallow, as Splitter's game is more likely to age well than one based on athleticism, like DeAndre Jordan's. Sure, JaVale and Jordan are younger, but their combined Bball IQ's are low compared to Splitter's, and this is a team trying to win (read: winning) now.

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I'm not a fan of Splitter,

I'm not a fan of Splitter, and his NBA finals last year really showed his average basketball talent.

Skilled big-man? I'll give you that he does have some skill, but very limited.

Good pick and roll defender? He's an average PnR defender at best.

Good post defender? Again, he's just an average post defender. Not a great shot blocker or rebounder.

Can he pass out of the post and not be a ball-stopper? I agree he can pass out of the post.

Mid-range shooting? Average, and not a guy I want taking mid range jumpers.

Game based more on skill, not athleticism? Yes, his game is more skill that athleticism.

My major problem with Splitter is that he is pretty soft, and the fact that his hands are awful. There were countless times in the finals last year where on PnR's he would receive a pass only to fumble it. He's an average center at best, and someone who I think should be making 6-7 million max.

His per 36 #'s in the postseason last year were; 10.8ppg 5.4rpg 2.1apg 1.4spg 1.3bpg. Very poor rebounding numbers, average block totals. Had an awful finals performance, was a turnover machine, and I literally wanted to cover my eyes every time they threw him the ball on a PnR. I just don't see why he's worth 10 mil. He's not a top 10 center, hell he's probably not even top 15.

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Yup, me and you are

Yup, me and you are completely on the same page.

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I think the NBA should switch

I think the NBA should switch the NFL salary cap system where contracts aren't guaranteed. Players have too much power over coaches. The change would fix that.

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The entire Magic roster seems

The entire Magic roster seems to be full of contract killers... besides the players who actually play. I think Josh Smiths deal will go down as an awful contract as well.

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Ugh, I hate it when people

Ugh, I hate it when people rag on Eric Gordon like he's a scrub just because he can't stay healthy.

Sure, he's a little undersized, but he has enough length and defensive instincts (not to mention a very solid frame) to defend bigger players and is capable of exceptional D when he's healthy.

Also, you can't deny the value of the contract for the people who offered it to him; the Phoenix Suns. In the context of Phoenix (a team known for fixing players with bad knees or "nagging injuries") the contract made a lot of sense, but New Orleans had to be stubborn and match the deal (which has to be the worst thing to happen to Gordon in his career).

If Gordon was healthy in Phoenix he'd be an All-Star and in the debate with Harden over "best SG in the next 5 years", instead of allegedly being on the trading block (with Phoenix unable to trade for him for some time).

While I have my doubts that Gordon will be able to stay healthy in New Orleans, if he IS healthy, his contract will be entirely appropriate.

As much as it's hard to feel sorry for an NBA player, Gordon gets my sympathy as a guy who recognised the need to put his health first and go to Phoenix but was denied.

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Don't get me wrong not that I

Don't get me wrong not that I don't think Eric Gordon has any skill. Sure, maybe if a team could keep him healthy, it'd be steep but justifiable. As of now however, I think its a bad contract.

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Joe Johnson's contract is

Joe Johnson's contract is really out of control. It hasn't turned into a killer for the Nets. But the guy is two dimensional player shooting and defense. Thank god his defense is basically good. Because his shooting is pretty average. And the defense he gives you is more pushing his man around and keeping him from the rim. It certainly isn't steals, blocks or rebounds. But he does defend without fouling and no one tries to post up Joe Johnson, which is nice.

Barnani was a real contract killer the last few years. The Raptors had a lot of money tied up in him and the draft choices. So there was always pressure to play him. But the Raptors were always a better team when Bargnani got hurt and sat down. And yet the Raptors were finally able to trade him.

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I agree with all the original

I agree with all the original contracts listed above bar Tiago Splitter's - his contract is $36 million over 4 years not $40 million, so that knocks a million off for each year and also it is front loaded - 10 million, 9.250 million, 8.5 million and 8.25 million.

So the Spurs will get the highest paid years out of the way soon and I would argue that moving an 8.25 million expiring deal would be easier than moving a 10 million expiring deal. Also Splitter has only been in the NBA 3 years so has not played so many long NBA seasons as other players his age.

Crash Wallace's contract on a contender was workable but on a team in rebuild would be hard to move, Boston got a number of draft picks to take that on as much as they did for moving KG and PP. Also Crash playing such physical role against often bigger guys has a lot of miles on the clock unlike Splitter.

A contender may look at Crash but $10 million a year is a lot and Boston may have to take an equally bad contract back, the ironic thing is that Crash and Humphries for STAT as a trade works well financially. The sticking point could be the Knicks may want maximum cap space in 2015 when Bargs, Chandler and STAT were due to expire.

Crash could fill the Copeland role at NY and play around Melo, Humphries could come from the bench and rebound and would assist Chandler on defence plus moving STAT clears the paint a bit as Bargs can play more perimeter.

Boston reduce their roster by a man and if they do want to tank can play STAT limited minutes and moving two players for one gives Brad Stevens more chance to play the younger guys. Plus STAT would probably not want to spend two years on a team in rebuild so could seek a buy out and if he initiates that then Danny Ainge has a chance to get a better deal than he would if the team sought to drive a buy out through.

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Regardless of what you think

Regardless of what you think of Splitter, it's hard to deny that he is better than some other players, who are on similar contracts:

Gerald Wallace
Jeff Green
Taj Gibson
David Lee (makes double what Splitter makes)

Historically worse contracts:
Bargnani
Perkins

I personally think Splitter is an excellent player. His value is higher on the Spurs team because he's an excellent fit for the team.

Obviously the Spurs would have gone after Millsap if they knew he would be that deep a discount... but I think the value was fair.

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I knew Barnagni's contract

I knew Barnagni's contract was horrible but I forget how long it lasted. Had there been a few more years left on it he EASILY would have been one of the worst. When the contract reaches its last year it becomes more of a benefit then a hindrance because it gives teams so much flexibility. Teams are always looks to find a last year contract to dump a player they don't like anymore.

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"I knew Barnagni's contract

"I knew Barnagni's contract was horrible but I forget how long it lasted. Had there been a few more years left on it he EASILY would have been one of the worst. When the contract reaches its last year it becomes more of a benefit then a hindrance because it gives teams so much flexibility. Teams are always looks to find a last year contract to dump a player they don't like anymore."

But...you basically said the opposite in your original post:

"He's already 28 (so much for upside) and in a few years when San Antonio should be looking to rebuild he'll be harder to move."

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I listed bargnani under the

I listed bargnani under the subheading "Historically worse".

Splitter was much better than Bargnani at the time their respective contracts were signed

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Are people still considering

Are people still considering Green a bad contract despite how well he played off the bench last year? I don't understand this.

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I'm not saying Green is a bad

I'm not saying Green is a bad player. I just think that Splitter was clearly better.

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He had a career year in

He had a career year in scoring efficiency. But he still can't rebound or pass. So he wan't good last year by any means. But if he continues to score at a nice clip, you are right it won't be the disaster that I and others thought the contract would be. If he can be a scorer who doesn't kill you on defense or in the other areas of the game, it isn't too bad.

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Joe Johnson is still

Joe Johnson is still incredibly valuable for what Brooklyn needs from a 2-guard, and the contract did not keep the Nets from adding Garnett, Pierce, Terry, Kirilenko, and Livingston as well as retain who Blatche.

Who is that contract hurting?

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Joe Johnson's contract isn't

Joe Johnson's contract isn't hurting anyone... until the end of the season when Mikhail Prokhorov has to pay the tax penalties for going so far over the salary cap. Brooklyn is fortunate enough to have a owner who willing to pay top dollar but if that team doesn't produce that's a huge waste of money. Either way I still say Joe Johnson has one of the worst contracts.

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Joe Johnson's contract isn't

Joe Johnson's contract isn't hurting anyone... until the end of the season when Mikhail Prokhorov has to pay the tax penalties for going so far over the salary cap. Brooklyn is fortunate enough to have a owner who willing to pay top dollar but if that team doesn't produce that's a huge waste of money. Either way I still say Joe Johnson has one of the worst contracts.

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Joe Johnson's contract isn't

Joe Johnson's contract isn't hurting anyone... until the end of the season when Mikhail Prokhorov has to pay the tax penalties for going so far over the salary cap. Brooklyn is fortunate enough to have a owner who willing to pay top dollar but if that team doesn't produce that's a huge waste of money. Either way I still say Joe Johnson has one of the worst contracts.

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Keep in mind that they are

Keep in mind that they are paying something like $20 million for the salary and at least another $20 million in luxury tax for Joe Johnson. $30 million in luxury tax might be the right way to look at it. (Luxury tax goes up as you get farther over the cap.) So we are talking nearly $50 million for a scorer who is kind of meh. Wow that is a lot of money.

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Performance contract clause

I really feel that the NBA needs a performance contract clause because every year, there are alot of sour contracts that some times have long stints. And when that happens alot of teams get hurt, and alot of other teams are not willing to pay the money for that player, so guess what that non performance player is stuck until that contract is at the back end of the deal or is up.

I love my Chicago Bulls, but I feel we shouldn't have gambled all that money away on Boozer. Now to me he's a good player, but doesn't fit in to the Bulls system like they thought he would. And it's not that anyone doesn't want to add him to their team, but its that contract they are not willing to take on. So if a performance clause would be in these contract, I think alot of teams would benefit. I feel alot of money shouldnt be guaranteed until the performance is reviewed. Like if Boozer was only guaranteed 75% of that big contract, and the rest would of been on performance, the Bulls would have been got him off their books, and probably got a player that really works with their system.

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That's an interesting idea! I

That's an interesting idea! I personally wouldn't mind it at all. I may be the only person who sided with the team owners rather than the players during the lockout season. Given the status of the economy and what it took to reel in a good player (a ridiculous contract) I thought owners were justified wanting change.

As for Boozer, you're right, I don't think he's worth 15mil. Close, but not quite. When Boozer was signed I thought the Bulls did what they needed to to lure in a quality post and had it not be for injury the decision would probably have paid off by now, and still might so I saw his contract as justifiable.

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I guess you have been

I guess you have been listening to Fox News. But here is the real state of the economy. The rich are getting richer. The owners are rich. They are getting richer through their various business and investments. And they got richer due to lock out.

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Beginning to realize no one

Beginning to realize no one really cares to share there thoughts on poor contracts but would rather bash mine. Shame. Maybe I should left my 5 out. Anyways I'm DONE talking about Splitter's contract.

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as skilled as pau gasol is,

as skilled as pau gasol is, he's a contract killer based on that situation,caron butler, ben gordon, steve blake, kris humphries, emeka okafor, richard jefferson, andres biedrins, andrew bogut, hedo turkoglu, and paul pierce, are all overpaid players, but fortunately on contract years.

big contract eaters are:
kendrick perkins contract maybe that contract blocking okc from a title over the next couple years
dwyane wade is on the fence right now. he is declining every year from injury and is questionable to live up to his 3 years left.
deron williams is a very good player, but he won't live up to his contract for the next 4 years.
john salmons is overpaid for the next couple seasons
blake griffin has a questionable contract, with 5 years left and most of his game based on athleticism.
nene is ok, but definitely not worth what he's getting paid for the next 3 years
amare stoudemire will probably not live up to the final 2 years of his contract due to injury.
carlos boozer is a bit over paid as we all know, which makes people hate him more than normal.
steve nash is a shell of himself at not worth the final 2 years of his contract
rudy gay is another over paid 2 year contract, but what else would toronto do at this point?

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