Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs recently signed a record-breaking ten-year contract worth up to 503 million dollars. A contract worth this amount of money is almost unheard of in most professional sports. This deal begs the question of which players in today’s NBA are deserving of a ten-year contract worth similar money? One of the major factors in determining the players for this list was their year to year improvement, so for that reason, rookies were not included.
NBA Players Who Deserve a Ten Year Contract
First up is the most obvious and deserving player of a ten-year contract in reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. At just 25 years old, Antetokounmpo has already solidified himself as the best player in the Eastern Conference. One of Antetokounmpo’s best traits is his willingness to improve on his weaknesses. He entered the league as a freak athlete who could finish at the rim and play decent defense. Today he has added a plethora of post moves and has developed a respectable jump-shot from 18 feet and in.
While a ten-year contract may not happen, the Milwaukee Bucks would be very wise to lock him down long-term. He is arguably the most dominant player in the NBA, and he hasn’t even reached his ceiling yet. He would remain in his prime for the majority of the contract but could slow down a bit over the final few years. The future is looking very bright for Antetokounmpo no matter what his next contract is.
Luka Doncic is probably the only other safe pick to sign to a ten-year deal. Throughout his two years in the league with the Dallas Mavericks, Doncic has already proven that he is a true star. Not only is he one of the top scorers in the league, but he is also one of the best defenders at his position. Two-way stars are difficult to find, let alone one who is just 21 years old.
Doncic has shown his willingness to improve and refine his game during his short tenure. A ten-year deal would be smart for Dallas as they would essentially have him under contract throughout the entire prime of his career. Of all the players on this list, Doncic is the one that would make the most sense.
Signing Trae Young to a ten-year contract would be a bit of a risk for the Atlanta Hawks. Young has shown the potential to do great things in the NBA and has seemingly put it all together this season. His weakness on defense and smaller sample size make a ten-year deal incredibly risky. While he could evolve into the next Stephen Curry, he may also regress into a streaky scorer.
At the age of only 21, Young would remain in the prime of his career throughout the deal. He would have time to improve his game and solidify himself as one of the top players in the NBA. It would be in the Hawks’ best interest to wait a year or two before offering a contract of that length.
At the beginning of the season, Jayson Tatum wouldn’t have crossed anyone’s mind when talking about a ten-year contract. He was a good player with the potential to develop into a star. Tatum has made tremendous strides and has evolved into one of the more dominant players in the entire NBA. He has made the Boston Celtics into a true contender and they would be wise to keep him for years to come.
Tatum is a very balanced player offensively with the ability to score from just about anywhere on the court. Pair that with his top-notch defensive ability and you have an elite player. Whether he can sustain this and continue to improve is the true question. If the Celtics believe he can then a ten-year deal may be something worth considering.
Last on the list is Miami Heat big man Bam Adebayo. There are other players in the league with more talent than Adebayo, but there is nobody who works harder than him. He was a pretty raw talent coming out of college, but he has worked tirelessly to improve on his game. He went from averaging just under seven points and five rebounds per game to averaging over 16 points and ten rebounds per game. Defensively he has become one of the league’s premier players, being one of the very few to lock down Antetokounmpo.
While he may not be worthy of a ten-year deal just yet, it’s a pretty safe bet to say that he will be down the line. Adebayo has done nothing except improve throughout his career and there is no reason to believe that will stop any time soon.
Embed from Getty Images