Portland Trail Blazers: 5 key contract decisions to make in the next year

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The Portland Trail Blazers have some decisions ahead of them in terms of player contracts in the next little while. Which key decisions do they have ahead of them in the next six months?

The Blazers are at a pivotal point in their contracts situation and where they sit with the current version of this team. Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum are in their primes, and both are about to move onto new deals in the 2022 season.

Neil Olshey gave up the team’s next first-round picks to bring in Robert Covington, and used their mid-level exception on Derrick Jones Jr. By doing this, Olshey signaled his intention to go all-in.

Olshey has some big decisions to make in the next 6 months, and some of this may depend on how this team does in the playoffs. Here are the decisions needing to be made

Portland Trail Blazers: 5 key contract decisions to make in the next year

Decision #1 – Anfernee Simons rookie extension

Anfernee Simons is coming up to the end of his third year in the NBA. This means that he is eligible for a contract extension. The rules for a rookie extension are that it needs to be signed before the first day of the player’s last year of his rookie contract.

Ant has improved his play this season, with a significant jump in his shooting as well as some better rebounding. He has been rewarded with slightly more minutes, but it’s unlikely that he gets a rookie extension. This isn’t because he hasn’t earned it, but because if you aren’t a max player in Portland, you don’t get a rookie extension before the deadline.

Only CJ and Dame have managed to command these deals at the rookie deadline. Otherwise, these players have hit restricted free agency and let the market decide what their price is. It’s unlikely Olshey changes his ways for Ant.

Ant will almost certainly have to wait till after his fourth season instead, so these talks can be held off until after the 2022 season.

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