While the team learned that free agent power forward Carlos Boozer would be lost with a fractured right hand, league sources confirmed the Bulls have come to an agreement with Joakim Noah on a contract extension.
Sources said the deal is for five years and is worth about $60 million. It would go into effect after this season.
Per KC Johnson:
The exact amount of the extension is unknown but believed to be in the
$12 million range annually. Incentives can take the deal higher, and a
source said the inclusion of these incentives represented the
breakthrough in negotiations.
First, and most importantly, hooray!
I'm psyched that the Bulls and Noah came to terms on a deal. He's one of the most fun and exciting players in the league IMO. He provides so much personality for the team and has become one of the vocal leaders.
Granted, similar things were said about Tyson Chandler at less money per year, but it never proved difficult for a team to get out of Tyson's deal, and if the Bulls need to the same is likely true of Noah's new deal (apart from a massive injury of course).
I've said for a long time that I love Noah, and fans will be initially excited to have him, but a couple years into a 12 million dollar per year extension and he may not be the quite the popular guy he is now. Just look at how Bulls fans feel about Luol Deng. There are a lot of similarities.
Guys who aren't quite max players, but clearly much better than non max players are the toughest guys to negotiate extensions with. If Noah mentions the new CBA in his rationale for accepting the extension then I'm taking credit.
Despite my fears of the salary hurting the Bulls down the road, I'll hope that the Bulls take a stance of being willing to go into the tax in the future and wipe those fears aside to be excited about the Bulls keeping a player we all love.
It will be interesting to find out what type of incentives are in the deal. If they are things like health based or all-star game appearance based and how likely they are to be met. One would think they're at least somewhat reasonable if they pushed the deal over the edge.
Now onto other things. The extension virtually guarantees that Noah will not be a part of any trade for Carmelo Anthony. Noah would count as 12 million in salary for the Nuggets, but only 3.1 million for the Bulls. Thus to combine him and Deng in a trade it counts as 23 million for the Nuggets and only 14.4 million for the Bulls.
There are a couple of permutations that still make a trade possible. If my calculations are correct Noah + Deng + James Johnson would match Melo + 1 of Afflalo, Lawson, or Balkman + a minimum contract guy. However, the window of things that can be done shrinks by a considerable margin with the extension and Noah taking on the "poison pill provision" tag.