On Tuesday, the NBA announced its All-NBA teams to see which players got 1st, 2nd and 3rd All-NBA Teams during the regular season. This is one of the highly anticipated awards as it has tremendous influence on how much a player can sign in their next contract.
Prior to Game 5 of the Milwaukee Bucks vs Brooklyn Nets game, the NBA announced its All-NBA Teams and results are in.
ALL-NBA 1st Team: Stephen Curry (Guard, Golden State Warriors), Luka Doncic (Guard, Dallas Mavericks), Giannis Antetokounmpo (Forward, Milwaukee Bucks), Kawhi Leonard (Forward, Los Angeles Clippers) and Nikola Jokic (Center, Denver Nuggets).
ALL-NBA 2nd Team: Damian Lillard (Guard, Portland Trail Blazers), Chris Paul (Guard, Phoenix Suns), Julius Randle (Forward, New York Knicks), LeBron James (Forward, Los Angeles Lakers) and Joel Embiid (Center, Philadelphia 76ers).
ALL-NBA 3rd Team: Bradley Beal (Guard, Washington Wizards), Kyrie Irving (Guard, Brooklyn Nets), Jimmy Butler (Forward, Miami Heat), Paul George (Forward, Los Angeles Clippers) and Rudy Gobert (Center, Utah Jazz).
As part of Luka Doncic being named All-NBA 1st team, he becomes the youngest player (age 22) in NBA history to earn multiple All-NBA First Teams. This is the second consecutive season in which Doncic has been selected All-NBA First Team. The third-year guard also becomes the seventh player in NBA history to earn two or more All-NBA First Team within their first three years in the NBA. Doncic finished the 2020-2021 season by averaging a team-best 27.7 points, 8.0 rebounds and a team-high 8.6 assists in 66 games (all starts). He ranked sixth in NBA scoring, 21st in rebounding and fifth in assists, finishing in the top 25 in all three categories for the second consecutive season.
Doncic is also the first player (not named Dirk Nowitzki) to earn multiple All-NBA First Teams in Dallas Mavericks’ franchise history. Nowitzki made the first, second or third All-NBA Team 12 times in his career and now with Doncic earning his second consecutive All-NBA first team (something Dirk Nowitzki didn’t earn until 2004-2007 seasons, in which he won three straight All-NBA first teams) he continues to add to his resume of his amazing young NBA career. If Doncic earns another All-NBA First Team next season then he will tie the Dallas Mavericks franchise record of consecutive All-NBA First Teams with 3. In just three years, Luka Doncic, now has half as many All-NBA First Team appearances as Dirk did in his 21 year career.
Although making the All-NBA Teams (1, 2 or 3) is a tremendous honor, that’s not even the important part yet. As part of the current NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement, each All-NBA Team is extremely crucial to players. While making any All-Team adds to the accomplishments of a player’s career, it also puts money in the player’s bank accounts. There’s a rule in the Collective Bargaining Agreement that determines how much a player gets to sign in free agency. There are two terms, the “Super Max” and the “Rookie Max”. The “Super Max” is only eligible to players who has (or will have) completed eights years in the NBA in which the team that drafted him or traded for his rookie contract. Then it must meet the following criteria: Be named to any All-NBA Team within the current season or last, OR be named All-NBA Defensive Player of the Year within the current season or last, OR be named NBA MVP in any of the previous three seasons. You can see why players strive to earn these awards because they open up big opportunities for how much a player could sign once they are eligible. A “Rookie Max” is when a player in his rookie contract earns the same qualifications as the “Super Max” but the only difference is, one is on their rookie contract and ones is a “veteran” in the NBA.
By having Luka Doncic, now earning his second consecutive All-NBA First Team in his rookie contract, he is eligible to sign the “Rookie Max” this offseason, which is 30% of the of the salary cap in the 2022-2023 season. The extension is projected to be $201.5M over the course of five seasons. Based on my own personal knowledge, I think (if I’m not mistaking) this would be the first “Rookie Max” in NBA history once Luka Doncic puts the pen to the paper. Whether I’m right or wrong, once he signs the contract, Doncic will be scheduled to earn on average of $40.3M a year and he’s only 22 years old. If he keeps up with this pace and keeps stacking up NBA awards, he will be on his way to earning tremendous amount of millions. He deserves every single penny of that “Rookie Max” as he has helped the Mavericks to back-to-back playoff appearances after being in the lottery in the years prior to Doncic arrival.
Once the Mavericks take care of Luka Doncic contract extension, they will turn their focus on adding tremendous talent to their roster to help them take the next step and hopefully clinch their first playoff series win since they won the 2011 NBA championship. The Mavericks still have plenty of work to do this offseason and they will need to make every move count as they have no time to waste. We will see what moves they actually make to improve roster and it will tell everything that we need to know in how serious they are to giving Luka Doncic some help.
Congratulations to Luka Doncic on earning his second consecutive All-NBA First Team! It’s very hard to earn any of the All-NBA Teams as they are so many good players that are worthy of a selection with only 15 spots available.
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