In a surprising move, the Cleveland Cavaliers rookie Kevin Porter Jr. has helped the team be negotiating his rookie deal so that he will be paid less money next season.
As reported by Jeff Siegel of Early Bird Rights, Porter Jr. will only be paid 80% of the Rookie Scale in year one before it rises to 120% in years two through four:
We have our first team in a very long time to negotiate with their first-round pick on the Rookie Scale: Kevin Porter Jr. will only receive 80% of the Rookie Scale in Year 1 before it rises to 120% in Years 2 through 4. Very, very rare to see that, but helps the Cavs on the tax.— Jeff Siegel (@jgsiegel) July 9, 2019
Rookies selected in the first round have a set contract scale with set salaries, but have the option to negotiate 80% to 120% of that scale over the four years.
Typically players almost always receive 120% of the rookie scale with very few exceptions. In 2013 the Oklahoma City Thunder offered Andre Roberson only 80 percent over the four years in an effort to stay under the luxury tax. Xavier Henry was only offered 100 percent of the scale in 2010 by the Memphis Grizzlies, but held out until he received his full 120 percent.
This four year contract will cost Porter Jr. $645,480 this upcoming season, which will help the Cavs tax bill. Should Porter Jr. work out for the Cavs, it’s possible that down the line the team will make good and factor this in similar to the generous offer the Oklahoma City Thunder made to Roberson when he hit free agency.