The Denver Nuggets and 24-year old big man JaVale McGee agreed to a four-year, $44 million contract on Wednesday, and with the price of centers rising in the NBA's free agent market the deal doesn't look too bad. It's much cheaper than the contracts handed out to Brook Lopez and Roy Hibbert, but right around what DeAndre Jordan got last year. In any case, McGee is now the highest-paid player on the Nuggets in terms of average annual salary. That means the opinions on the new deal are going to be strong.
Here is an excerpt from a particularly well-reasoned and deep look at the deal from Nate Timmons of SB Nation's Nuggets blog, Denver Stiffs:
As far as negotiations go - when news broke of the $10 million per season offer, that appeared to be the floor. The Nuggets couldn't possibly pay less, could they?...McGee's actual earnings for the 2012-13 season have yet to be released, he could be making somewhere in the $9-$10 million range with percentage-raises each season.
McGee's deal pays him slightly more than DeAndre and one could say they are similar players ... raw offense, lots of athletic ability, and young. McGee appeared in 20 games for the Nuggets and started five. He accepted his role off the bench and turned in some fine performances and highlight reel plays. Pairing Andre Miller with McGee was a move that paid off for Karl and bringing both of them back should help McGee's ability to get easy buckets, see oop, alley.
McGee was acquired from the Washington Wizards in a trade for Nene prior to the trade deadline last season. He averaged 11.3 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game over the full season in 2011-12.
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