Gordon Hayward’s shiny new contract with the Charlotte Hornets put him with some elite company.
His deal, which will pay out about $120 million, makes him just the third player in history to sign multiple contracts worth at least $30 million per year. The other two? LeBron James and Kevin Durant.
LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Gordon Hayward are the only three players in NBA History to sign multiple contracts worth $30+ Million per year
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) November 30, 2020
In 2016, LeBron signed a deal that would make him the NBA’s highest-paid player. It was his first time reaching the $30-million mark, with earnings of $31 million in 2016-17 and $33 million in 2017-18. Of course, we know that James signed a four-year, $154 million deal with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2018.
For Durant, his contracts in Golden State and, now, Brooklyn have both surpassed the golden yearly number and totaled a whopping $118 million (not counting the remaining years left on his Brooklyn deal).
In the case of both players, the contracts were more than worth the financial hit — and both players won Championships with those teams.
The same cannot be said for Hayward. In fact, many question if he can ever return to All-Star form after suffering a series of unfortunate injuries over the past few years. His recent deal with the Hornets makes him one of the league’s highest-paid players — and marks the second time he has inked such a sizeable deal. In case you hadn’t noticed before, it was quite a controversial move by the organization.
Had heard Gordon wanted out for a long time but it was always assumed he’d take less for an average annual salary than the $34m option.
CHA basically kept him close to the option and added three years. CHA just signed one of the worst contracts of free agency.
— Russillo (@ryenarussillo) November 21, 2020
I know I said on the air that someone would overpay for Hayward, but 4 years $120 million is certifiably insane.
— Toucher and Rich (@Toucherandrich) November 21, 2020
CRAZY to pay Gordon Hayward 30 million a year for the next four years.
Michael Jordan. The GOAT as a player, but man is he bad as an owner.
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanHoops) November 21, 2020
It will be up to him to prove he’s worth every penny. But when LeBron James and Kevin Durant are swimming in the same category, it can be hard to shine.