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Nuggets signing Michael Porter Jr. to max, potentially super-max, contract extension

Nuggets forward Michael Porter Jr.

CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 11: Michael Porter Jr. #1 of the Denver Nuggets smiles during the game against the Charlotte Hornets on May 11, 2021 at Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by Kent Smith/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

The Nuggets highly valued Michael Porter Jr. before he played much in the NBA. They highly valued Porter before he became a regular starter.

Now that Porter is coming off a breakout season, the Nuggets are really showing how much they value Porter.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

This extension projects to be worth $173 million over five years.

If Porter makes an All-NBA team next season, that’d trigger the super-max and allow him to earn a projected $207 million. But the odds or Porter claiming one of six All-NBA forward slots are low.

Either way, the exact value of the extension won’t be determined until next summer.

Porter is a phenomenally talented scorer. He has a clean stroke on his jumpers and, at 6-foot-10, can get off shots from all parts of the floor. He must continue to improve as a defender and passer, but he’s just 23.

The bigger question is health. Porter slipped to No. 14 in the 2018 draft then missed his first professional season due to back injuries. There are also concerns about his handling of coronavirus.

We’ll see whether Porter’s deal is fully guaranteed. In 2017, the 76ers set a precedent by signing Joel Embiid to a rookie-scale extension that wasn’t fully guaranteed for some injuries.