Thunder Have Deal with Singler But Kanter's Price Going Up
By Randy Renner
By now the Thunder had hoped to have handshake agreements with both Enes Kanter and Kyle Singler.
Singler's deal is done but there's still work to do with Kanter and it looks like the Thunder will have to spend more than they'd hoped.
Singler ended up with a better deal than probably most Thunder fans figured he would, 5 years/$25 million. That fifth year is a team option for the Thunder. Last season Singler made just over $1 million so he's getting a substantial raise.
He was put in an impossible situation last season, starting 18 games in place of superstar Kevin Durant after being traded to OKC in the Reggie Jackson deal, and averaging just 3.7 points and 2.1 rebounds a game. His career averages are much better and after getting used to his new environment and a role as Durant's primary backup he should be much more effective.
The Thunder now will almost surely do everything they can to move Perry Jones and or Steve Novak and their combined $5.75 million salary. The Thunder are reportedly asking teams interested in Jones for a first round pick but as you can probably tell that's not going over very well.
The Thunder's offer to restricted free agent center Enes Kanter also apparently fell flat. RealGM reported the Thunder were planning to offer a deal, that with incentives, would approach a max contract. Kanter appears to want a full max deal without incentives and with some big money teams missing out on centers he may get at least one.
The Knicks thought they were getting Greg Monroe for sure, all the talk was that he wanted to play in NYC. But those bright lights of the big stage haven't helped the Knicks win any championships lately or even get to the playoffs consistently so Monroe surprised everyone by agreeing to a deal with Milwaukee.
The Lakers have apparently missed out on LaMarcus Aldridge and perhaps DeAndre Jordan too so they may make a play for Kanter. Portland wants to talk with him also in case Aldridge does what everyone figures he will and leaves the Blazers. The Mavericks are in the running for both Aldridge and Jordan but if they miss out with those guys Kanter could become an option and San Antonio could become interested too if Aldridge turns the Spurs down, especially now that they've traded away Tiago Splitter.
If Kanter does get a max offer from someone the Thunder will have the right to match it and probably will. They were offering close to the max anyway.
But something that looked like a slam dunk deal a few days ago, doesn't look so easy anymore.