Brian Windhorst of ESPN came out with the contract details for returning forward LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers this afternoon. James will sign just a two-year contract for $42.1 million with the option of opting out next summer.
The structure of this deal allows James to capitalize on the expected jump of the salary cap in the summer of 2016.
“Depending on how the new television contracts are put together, the salary cap is projected to leap to as high as $80 million in 2016. There is also uncertainty with the current collective bargaining agreement starting in 2017, another reason James wanted to keep his long-term options open when it comes to the structure of his contract.”
For those who are a little anxious about the length of this deal, I’ll say that it would be quite shocking after the beautiful words conveyed in James’s announcement for him to turn around and leave at any time in the near future. Just for reassurance, Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal had this to say.
#Cavs operating under belief LeBron will most likely finish his career in Cleveland.
— Jason Lloyd (@JasonLloydABJ) July 12, 2014
Windhorst added in the article that he is “fully committed to the Cavs long term”. With an incredibly young roster that has a long way to go before being a finished product, it would be beyond a head-scratcher for this to be anything but Cavs owner Dan Gilbert, agent Rich Paul, and James being on the exact same page when it comes to maximizing LeBron’s income potential and the Cavaliers’ chances for success.