Report: Clippers, Lou Williams reach deal on three-year extension
Lou Williams is not going anywhere at the trade deadline.
(Which is good news for Memphis, the value of Tyreke Evans just went up).
Reports that the Clippers and Williams were close to an extension have turned out to be spot on, the sides have reached a deal, something broken by Shams Charania of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.
Los Angeles Clippers guard Lou Williams has agreed to a three-year contract extension, league sources tell Yahoo.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) February 7, 2018
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN added details.
Lou Williams' new three-year deal with the Clippers will include a team option on the third year, league sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 7, 2018
While we don’t know the final numbers, this likely be for three years, roughly $30 million, with that team option for the final season (similar to what Josh Richardson got in Miami).
That’s a fair deal for both sides. Williams has played at an All-Star level this season for the Clippers, averaging 23.3 points and 5.3 assists per game, picking up the slack when Blake Griffin was out injured (and again now, after he’s been traded). He’s running away with the Sixth Man of the Year award (although if Evans and Eric Gordon start fewer games the final 10 weeks of the season they could move into the conversation). As well as he’s played, at age 31 Williams likely wouldn’t have gotten more than the non-taxpayer mid-level exception as a free agent, and that would have been for a couple million less per season. This way he gets paid.
There was interest in Williams on the trade market, but no team was willing to give up the first-round pick the Clippers wanted in a trade, so Los Angeles turned its attention to the extension instead.
For the Clippers, they stay competitive for a playoff spot this season (especially if they don’t move DeAndre Jordan at the trade deadline, and it seems less and less likely they will, but they might find a deal for Avery Bradley). Then, even if they lose Jordan in free agency next summer, Williams will be on a tradable contract that other teams would want.