Since Russell Westbrook stole all of the thunder from the rest of the NBA’s top point guards this season, John Wall’s stellar campaign went below the radar.
Averaging 23.1 points, 4.2 rebounds and 10.7 assists in 36.4 minutes per game during the regular season and 27.2 points, 3.7 rebounds and 10.3 assists in 39.0 minutes in 13 playoff games for the Washington Wizards, Wall turned in the best season of his seven-year NBA career.
With two years left on his current deal and set to become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2019 per Spotrac, the Wizards already reportedly have their hearts set on an extension with the face of their franchise.
Since Wall was named to the All-NBA Third Team for his stellar play this year, he is eligible for the new “super max” extension that accounts for 35 percent of the salary cap. That essentially means that he’d be eligible for a new deal in the range of $170 million over four additional years, as reported by J. Michael of CSN Mid-Atlantic.
Michael also added that while the money would be huge, it’s not a given that Wall wants to re-sign with the only team he’s ever played for. First and foremost, he’d have to be convinced that the direction of the franchise is headed upwards. Since LeBron James and the Cavaliers will likely continue to contend in the Eastern Conference until King James decides to retire, Wall will need to be surrounded with talent in order to potentially dethrone Cleveland.
“From league sources close to the situation, Wall wants to see a bigger picture plan on where the franchise is headed before committing for longer. The Wizards won 49 games this season and advanced to the conference semifinals for the third time in four years,” Michael wrote.
While playoff appearances are certainly considered to be positive, early departures have haunted Wall and the Wizards in recent seasons. But, given their regular season success, it was obvious that Washington had the talent to make a run in this year's playoffs. It simply just didn't work out.
Wall was named to an All-NBA team for the first time in his career and was just one win away from leading the Wizards to their first Eastern Conference Finals appearance since 1970. While there’s still time for him to decide where he wants to end up after the next two seasons, Wizards fans would rest easy knowing that their superstar will be a mainstay with the franchise over at least the next six seasons if an extension was announced this summer.