$2.8 million. That’s all the New York Knicks are paying to J.R. Smith this season.
With the way he’s playing, though, Smith is going to demand a hefty contract this off-season, but the Knicks are a little handcuffed with their finances. They will not have any cap room, so it’s not like they can walk out and give him, say, a max-deal, but thanks to holding Smith’s early bird-rights, they will have some leeway.
As an early-bird, J.R. Smith will be eligible for 104.5% of the average N.B.A. salary in year one, with 7.5% raises year-over-year. Next season, the average salary will be somewhere around $5.2 million (estimation). Based on that number, the Knicks could offer J.R. Smith a four year deal worth around $24.3 million. The yearly breakdown would look something like this: year one – $5.4 million, year two – $5.8 million, year three – $6.3 million, year four – $6.8 million.
While the Knicks don’t have excess cap-room to give Smith whatever he wants, the team can put together a decent sized offer that might be enough to entice Smith to stay in New York.