Being an economics graduate, I’m all for the free market and NBA players getting paid as much as they can. So our All-Crappy Contract article isn’t meant as an indictment on the players listed. However, in a league governed by a salary cap, how much a player earns actually matters. Saying all this, here are the five players giving their respective teams the least for the most.
Zach LaVine – Chicago – $19.5 million ($78 million guaranteed remaining)
Zach LaVine is only 23 years old, so this contract might end up ok in the end. But $19.5 million a year for a player who only played 71 games combined over the past two years due to knee surgery is a risky play (the Bulls can thank Sacramento for the hefty offer sheet they gave to him). Even when healthy, the UCLA product hasn’t proven himself to be even an average player.
Tyler Johnson – Miami – $19.2 million
Speaking of average players, here’s Tyler Johnson! Nice role player, decent shooter. However, average NBA players earn around $7.5 million this upcoming season, not over $19 million. And good news Heat fans – he’s got a player option for 2019/20 for another $19.2 million.
Andrew Wiggins – Minnesota – SF – $25.3 million ($146.5 million guaranteed remaining)
First off, I’m Canadian so this hurts to write, but Andrew Wiggins hasn’t really lived up to expectations in the NBA. He can’t shoot, he’s a horrible defender (slightly improved though), a below average rebounder & passer. Almost $150 million left owing to him, too.
Chandler Parsons – Memphis – SF – $24.1 million ($49.2 million guaranteed remaining)
Only 70 games played over the past two years, and less than 20 minutes a game when he was healthy enough to suit up. This signing really couldn’t have gone worse for the Grizzlies. Less than $50 million left owing to him though!
Hassan Whiteside – C – Miami – $25.4 million
In a league moving away from traditional centers, this is a lot of money to pay a guy who the Heat struggled to find court time for during the playoffs last year. Add in his reportedly bad attitude, and his player option for 2019/20 to the tune of $27.1 million, and this is a crappy contract.
Danilo Gallinari – Clippers – SF – $21.6 million ($44.2 million guaranteed remaining)
Ryan Anderson – Phoenix – PF – $20.4 million ($41.7 million guaranteed remaining)