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8 Million by comparison

It’s starting to sound like the new ownership is stepping up to the table to get a deal done with Chris Wilcox. As reported in today’s Seattle Times article, the parties seem to be haggling over the last few million dollars over the life of a 3 year contract. Reportedly, Wilcox wants 8 Million per season and the Sonics are offering 7.

I like the idea of the 3 year contract, and I think 8 Million is a fair price. Seattle would be well served to just get it done. We all know that current Seattle management is loathe to overpay its players, and I am fine with that as well. Who wants to overpay for anything? Luckily, the most recent time that Management offered to overpay (Vlade), we were rebuffed. So Seattle is in really good shape with its current salary structure, really only paying one player that it has no use for in Danny Fortson, whose expiring contract has actually turned into a tradable asset. Now is the time to get the deal done with Wilcox.

Interestingly, a deal with Wilcox might have happened much sooner had not Denver offered Nene that $60 million dollar albatross of a contract. What were they thinking?

I took some time to investigate the salaries of some of the Power Forwards in the league and tried to evaluate where 8 Million over 3 would put Wilcox among his peers. It’s actually very gratifying to see how that salary would stack up, and to see just how much some teams have overpaid their 4’s.

The Obscene: (This group is badly overpaid, or at least overpaid compared to performance)
Chris Webber- $20.7-22.3 Million/year for 2 more years.
Theo Ratliff- $11.6 Million/year for 2 more years.
K. Martin- $12-16.5 Million/year for 5 more years.
Lamar Odom- $12.3-14.2 Million/year for 3 more years.
Z. Randolph- $12-17.3 Million/year for 5 more years.

The expensive: (It seems like a lot of money)
Elton Brand- $13.4-15.1 Million/year for 3 more years.
M. Taylor- $9.7 Million in his last year.
S. Dalembert-$8.4-11.6 Million/year for 5 more years.
M. Camby - $9-11.7 Million/year for 4 more years.
Nene- $8-12 Million/year for 6 more years.
R. Wallace- $11.4-13.6 Million/year for 3 more years.
T. Murphy- $8.2-11.9 Million/year for 5 more years.
Amare S.- $12.4-17.6 Million/year for 6 more years.

A bit more reasonable:
P.J. Brown- $10.3 Million/year in his last year.
A. Croshere- $7.3 Million/year in his last year.
J. Howard- $6.3-7.3 Million/year over 3 more years.
A. Walker- $7.7-10.6 Million/year over 5 more years.
K. Thomas- $7.1-8.7 Million/year for 4 more years.
R. Artest- $7.3-8.5 Million/year for 3 more years
D. Fortson- $6.9 Million/year in his last year.
M. Okur- $8.1-9.1 Million/year for 4 more years.

You decide:
Vlade R.- $5.2-6.8 Million/year for 5 more years.
S. Swift- $5.4-6.2 Million/year for 3 more years.

You can debate whether I have placed these players in the correct categories or not, but from the salaries and players listed, it doesn’t seem to me to be overpaying if we give Wilcox 8 Million over 3. That is less than will be paid to Kenny Thomas. It would be 19 Million dollars less than Philly will pay Chris Webber. It is several million less per year than Troy Murphy or Samuel Dalembert.

I actually like the comparison of Chris Wilcox to Mehmet Okur. Based on last year’s numbers, it shakes out like this on a per 48 minute basis:

F/G F/GA F/T F/TA ORB DRB TRB AS ST BLK TOV PF PTS/48
Wilcox 8.0 14.1 3.5 4.8 3.7 9.1 12.9 1.6 1.0 1.0 2.25 5.7 19.62
Okur 8.5 18.4 5.7 7.4 3.4 8.7 12.1 3.1 .6 1.1 2.6 4.6 24.0

Wilcox plays closer to the basket, and I didn’t bother to put 3pt shots in the comparison because Wilcox doesn’t shoot them. Okur shoots more often than Chris, and his percentage is significantly lower at 45% to Chris’s 57%, because he is further from the basket, but it increases his scoring average. Okur will be paid between 8.1 and 9.1 Million per year for 4 more seasons, which is very reasonable, and in the same ballpark as the contract Chris is seeking.

Decide for yourself. In my opinion 8 Million over 3 would be very fair the way I see it. If I were the new Management, I think I would load it up with incentives to keep him hungry and working hard. If he turns out to be the next Vin Baker, at least we are only on the hook for 3 more years, and Nick Collison is a very reasonably priced (for now) backup.