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What was the biggest contract in NBA history?

Contracts and salaries in the NBA are a bit different from the other sports. Players get a certain amount of money for a particular amount of time. The largest contracts are usually given to star players and leaders of the team. So what was the biggest contract in NBA History?

What was the biggest contract in NBA History? The biggest contract in NBA history was signed in June 2022, when the Denver Nuggets extended 2 time MVP Nicola Jokic, signing the Serbian centre to a 5-year deal worth $276 million. The contract which runs from the 2023-24 season to the 2027-28 season has already started to pay the Nuggets back as Jokic led them to their first ever NBA Championship, winning NBA Finals MVP, the year before the contract extension even kicks in. Jokic will collect an average of $55.2 million a year, with the 5th and final year as a massive $62.8 million player option.

Nicola Jokic might have the biggest contract, but he is not the only NBA player who has recently signed a massive contract. In this article, we will also review other players and how their deals look like.

Who Jokic nocked off the top spot: Giannis

Nicola Jokic replaced another title winning 2 time MVP at the top of the NBA’s massive contract list. Giannis Anteokounmpo’s 2020 extension was a whopper! Antetokounmpo’s extension had remained one of the main unresolved going into the 2020/2021 season. The deadline for Giannis’ situation expired on December 21st. It seemed that the Greek would delay to the last and, perhaps, even abandon the new agreement with the Bucks, taking his final year player option for reflection and getting the opportunity to assess the situation in the free-agent market in the offseason. However, the Greek player decided not to prolong the situation and signed a $228 million supermaximum contract with the club. This was at the time the largest contract in NBA history. Much like Jokic, Giannis won the title with the Bucks that year, before his extension had even kicked in.

List of the biggest NBA Contracts

RankPlayerContract YearsContract DurationAge at signingContract ValueAverage per year
1Nikola Jokic52023-202727$276,080,000$55,216,000
2Bradley Beal52022-202629$251,019,650$50,203,930
3Devin Booker42024-202727$234,572,800$58,643,200
3Karl-Anthony Towns42024-202728$234,572,800$58,643,200
5Giannis Antetokounmpo52021-202526$228,200,420$45,640,084
6Stephen Curry42022-202533$215,353,664$53,838,416
7Luka Doncic52022-202622$215,159,700$43,031,940
7Zach LaVine52022-202627$215,159,700$43,031,940
7Trae Young52022-202622$215,159,700$43,031,940
10Joel Embiid42023-202628$213,248,000$53,312,000
NBA’s 10 largest contracts accurate ahead of Free Agency 2023

Stephen Curry

One of the best shooters ever the NBA’s all time 3 point maker, only unanimous MVP and 4x NBA Champion Steph Curry has only the 6th highest contract of all time with the Golden State Warriors. The 4 year agreement between the parties guarantees a total of $215 million and is currently the 6th biggest contract of all time. At the time of signing it gave him the largest annual average salary of all time at $55.8 million, which although 3rd now behind Booker and Towns, is still a highe yearly salary than Jokic.

Curry became the champion with the Warriors four times, 2015, 2017, 2019 and 2022.

The Clippers Dilema: Paul George & Kawhi Leonard

When Kawhi Leonard decided to end his spell in Toronro with 1 season, 1 championship and 1 Finals MVP, he decided to put down roots in LA with the Clippers. Not before pushing the longe beleagured Franchise into trading for his preferred running buddy, Paul George. Since that fateful summer of 2019 the Clippers Franchise has been yo-yoing from sure thing title favourites to injury plagued failure.

Having intitially signed Kawhi to a 3 year $103 million contract with the final year a player option, they extended him after 2 years, giving the 2 time Finals MVP a $176 million 4 year contract with 2024-25 being a player option.

Similarly Paul George who they traded for at the time of signing Kawhi in 2019, was extended on a 4 year $176 million contract with the final year lining up with Kawhi’s and also being a player option.

The Clippers now face 2 players, who when healthy are some of the best in the world and more than capable of leading the Clippers to their first ever NBA title, being eligable for some sizeable extensions after this coming season. With George already 33 and Leonard 32, the back end of those contracts could look scary.

Clippers owner Steve Ballmers pockets are deep and his desire to win massive. But with the luxury tax restrictions seemingly tightening up, how much of a gamble would it be to offer 1 or both of these two expetional players a massive 4 year contract to stay in LA?