Report: Bulls plan to offer Jimmy Butler max contract
When you see Butler was offered just $40 million over four years, you understand why a deal didn’t get done. As Butler has improved to an All-Star level, that deal looks even further below what market rate will be for the guard as a restricted free agent this summer.
Make no mistake: Market rate is a max contract.
The Bulls already have $62,590,142 committed to Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson, Pau Gasol, Nikola Mirotic, Kirk Hinrich, Doug McDermott, Jimmy Butler, Tony Snell and Richard Hamilton’s cap hit for next season. Add four minimum salaries to fill out the roster, and Chicago falls just $14,320,754 short of the projected luxury-tax line. Butler’s projected max salary is $15,856,500.
Will that give another team room to sign Butler to a max offer sheet and steal him from Chicago?
It’ll be interesting to see where the Bulls’ offer falls between the max they can pay him (projected to be $91,174,875 over five years) or the max another team can pay him ($67,707,255 over four years).
Here are how both contracts would look, with the most he could get by re-signing in red and by signing elsewhere in black:
Because Butler will be a restricted free agent this summer, the Bulls knew they could lowball him in contract-extension negotiations. That’s the time to try for a team-friendly contract.
They could always offer more in the offseason, and it seems that’s what they’ll do.