Power forward Jaren Jackson Jr. just signed a lucrative four-year, $105MM rookie contract extension with the Grizzlies, very much predicated on Jackson’s ceiling. Evan Barnes of the Memphis Commercial Appeal details why he considers the agreement mutually beneficial to both sides in a new piece. A big reason: the contract will decrease in value every season once it kicks in, which will give Memphis room to further bolster the roster.
“I’m locked in, I’m blessed, I’m happy I get to be here and be around people I love,” the 6’11” big man proclaimed of the deal and his chemistry in Memphis. “It’s a good experience.”
Due to Jackson’s extensive injury history, the agreement contains an injury protection on the last year of the deal (for 2025/26), a source informed John Hollinger of The Athletic.
There’s more out of the Southwest Division:
- Following two injury-plagued years, Rockets swingman David Nwaba is relishing his health heading into the 2021/22 season, writes Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle. Nwaba suffered an Achilles injury in December 2019, and then a right wrist injury in February of this year that ultimately required surgery. “Hopefully, just take care of my body for the length of this season,” Nwaba said of his hopes for the year. “I think we’ve had a lot of improvements on the defensive end.” All told, the 28-year-old has been healthy for just 50 of his past 144 games with Brooklyn and Houston.
- Thanks to an uncertain recovery timeline for the injured foot of All-Star power forward Zion Williamson, the Pelicans have already proved frustrating to fans ahead of the 2021/22 season, opines Scott Kushner of the NOLA.com. Kushner reflects that, though Williamson and team president David Griffin made it seem like he could be back in time for the beginning of the year, it appears that the team was either too hopeful or being deliberately disingenuous.
- Mavericks All-Star point guard Luka Doncic expressed his excitement about the club’s development ahead of the 2021/22 season, according to Callie Caplan of the Dallas Morning News. “I think we’re playing great, sharing the ball,” Doncic said of the team’s 4-0 preseason showing. “Especially on the defensive end, we’ve been way better, and I think that’s the key for us.”