Pelican, Zion Williamson nearing five-year extension

The swans Close to concluding an agreement to extend the entry-level five-year range forward Zion WilliamsonShams Charania reports from Al-Riyadi (Twitter link).

According to Charanya, it will be the maximum salary deal which can be worth up to $231 million. This indicates that it will contain rose base The language that would allow Williamson to qualify for a starting salary of 30% of the 2023/24 cap instead of 25% if he joins the All-NBA team next season.

Charania’s report does not include any details about how much of the contract will be fully guaranteed, which is the sticking point in the negotiations. Says (Via Twitter) that the deal was expected to include some protection for the pelicans and that the two sides were discussing those details overnight.

We’ll have to wait for more details on that front, but it looks like the two sides are on the cusp of finding common ground fairly quickly now that the previous first public pick officially became eligible for an extension.

The agreement ends months of speculation that Williamson may reject an extension offer from the Pelicans to play in a larger market or for a more successful franchise. Williamson tried on several occasions to stamp out those rumors by declaring his love for New Orleans, Latest Comments Coming three weeks ago at his youth basketball camp.

Injuries have disrupted Williamson’s career since entering the NBA as the first-choice in 2019. He missed the entire season after undergoing foot surgery and played in 85 joint games in three years. However, he has shown signs of being a dominant force, averaging 25.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, 3.2 assists per game and an All-Star appearance in 2021.

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A healthy season from Williamson, who turns 22 later this week, could make the Pelicans a serious contender in the Western Conference. New Orleans saw a late season rally after trading CJ McCollum, and progress through playing in the tournament and to the first round of the playoffs. Williamson could be a squad builder for an already talented roster, but he will have to prove he can stay on the court.

Based on the NBA’s latest forecast of $133 million for the 2023/24 season, Williamson’s deal would be worth $231.42 million if he meets Rose Reuel’s criteria next season, or $192.85 million if he doesn’t. This is without considering any protections that may be included in the contract.

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