Stephen Curry is undoubtedly the leader of the Golden State Warriors. The Dubs morphed into the premier franchise in the NBA five years after Curry was selected in the 2009 draft. He has won three NBA championships, and two NBA MVPs since entering the league, and is one of the most exciting players in the history of the game.
Curry has two years left on the max extension he signed three years ago which saw him become the first NBA player to sign a $200 million contract. He will be paid an average of $44.4 million for the next two years, but he is eligible to sign another massive deal that would keep him in the Bay Area through the 2024-25 season.
ESPN’s Bobby Marks did a deep dive on Golden State’s offseason options, and broke down what another max extension would cost the Warriors:
Here is what a max extension for the two-time MVP would look like:
2022-23: $48.0 million | Age: 34-35
2023-24: $51.9 million | Age: 35-36
2024-25: $55.7 million | Age: 36-37
Even for a franchise player, those are huge numbers as a player enters his mid-30s. The Warriors will need to make sure they’re confident in this roster long term and in Curry’s health before extending such an offer.
Curry will be able to hit 3-point bombs into his 50s, so his biggest strength shouldn’t be affected by age. His career numbers certainly show his worth. Curry has averaged 23.5, and 6.6 assists per game while shooting a ridiculous 43.5% from the 3-point line during his career. His 23.83 player efficiency ranks No. 23 among all players in NBA history.
During his peak years, Curry was easily one of the best players in the league, finishing in the top eight in win shares for five-straight seasons, per basketball reference. The issue will be if he is worth just over $55 million during a season in which he will turn 37 years old.
Curry got past ankle issues early in his career and stayed relatively healthy over the five seasons from 2012 through 2017. Since then, the 32-year-old has missed 104 games over the last three years, including 60 this past season.
Chris Paul is an example of how getting into your mid-30s doesn’t necessarily mean your game will see a sharp decline. Paul is due north of $41 million over the next two years and will be 37 in the final year of his deal. He led a surprising Oklahoma City Thunder team to the playoffs this season when many thought his production would drip.
Paul isn’t on Curry’s planet as a sheer-scorer, but his impact on the game cannot be understated. Curry would possibly have to be more of a facilitator is his quickness begins to decline over the coming seasons.
Of course, Curry could agree to sign for less than the max to finish out his career with the Warriors and help ownership avoid paying a steep luxury-tax bill into the middle of the decade.
Curry’s beloved in the Bay Area, so the sentimental choice would be to keep him there until he walks away from the game.
Would you give Curry another max extension?
On to some links:
Speaking of Curry, the debate rages on who the better point guard is between him and Damian Lillard. NBC Bay Area’s Monte Poole says enough-is-enough, and it’s time to appreciate both players.
The $17.2 million trade exception is a huge chip for general manager Bob Myers. The Athletic’s Anthony Slater continues his looks at potential targets for Golden State, this time he focuses on a wing from the Philadelphia 76ers.