As it’s been reported, John Wall and the Wizards have agreed on a contract extension that would keep Wall in Washington for an extra 5 years after his current rookie deal runs out. The specifics of the deal are 5 years for $80 Million, which would be the max deal in Wall’s case and prevent the Wizards from using the 5 year designation on anyone else. It’s certainly a bold move giving the max to Wall but such a risk might be warranted in his case.
In my opinion, the Wizards only had 3 realistic options with Wall. They could’ve let him enter restricted free agency and let another team max him out for 4 years instead of the 5, let him take the qualifying offer or max him out. The route they chose might’ve been a preemptive measure to appease Wall and lock on to someone who might evolve into a franchise cornerstone.
Last season after returning to the court Wall posted career highs in just about every single statistical category. His TS% and eFG% while still being a bit below average, were the highest they’ve ever been. Along with the statistical improvements came the advancement of a perimeter jumper that has been severely lacking from his game. Last season Wall shot a career high 36% from 16-23 feet on a career high 6.7 attempts per 4o.
The deal obviously goes above the going rate for non all star point guards, but it’s not a deal that will immediately correlate with his talent. The deal that Stephen Curry took and the deal that Rajon Rondo took off of his rookie deal are outliers for guards on the verge of being looked at as “superstars” and are case-specific. For Curry, his deal obviously came before his record breaking season(ankle injury history) and Rondo’s deal came before many even considered him the best player in Boston. You have to think that those two players were in mind when Wall’s agent, Dan Fegan, and the Wizards were negotiating the terms of the deal. Though the Wizards were in a position where they had all of the leverage, this deal clearly states that they believe Wall can be their cornerstone player.
It’s not that much of a stretch to say Wall is worth $80 million dollars. Russell Westbrook received a similar extension in his fourth season and while it’s hard to say Wall will be as good as Westbrook, anything close to that level of production would warrant such a contract.
The important thing to note is the improvement and how each year he’s grown. He’s shown major potential and is conceivably a consistent jumper away from jumping into that top tier of point guards. While this deal does not currently correlate to his value, it’s a deal that shows faith the organization that Wall can grow into the player that they can build around.