As has become a trend in the NBA, superstars who are the cornerstones of their franchise are opting for less money to sign shorter deals. Following in the footsteps of LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Paul, point guard Deron Williams has settled on a three-year deal with an option for a fourth with the Utah Jazz.
The deal will pay Williams nearly $50 million for the first three years and nearly $70 million if he sticks around for the fourth year of his contract. So, for the near future at least, the Jazz has their man.
The next important contract to negotiate will be with Carlos Boozer, who can opt out of his deal after next season. For Utah, the most important way to solidify Boozer as a Jazzman will be to win, and with Williams locked up for the next several years that shouldn’t be a problem.
After failing to make the playoffs in Williams’ rookie season Utah has returned to form as perennial title contenders. An unexpected trip to the Western Conference Finals in 2007, before losing to the eventual champion San Antonio Spurs, put D-Will on the NBA map and he has played like a superstar ever since.
Snubbed as an All-Star last season, Williams responded by leading the Jazz to one of the best records in the NBA in the second half of the season. His Jazz team also maintained the best home record in the league finishing with just four losses at Energy Solutions Arena all year.
Another run through the playoffs ended prematurely as the Jazz lost in the second round to the Lakers, but as long as Williams is at the helm the Utah Jazz will be a team to recon with in the Western Conference. And while the jury is still out on what Boozer will decide to do, Utah fans can relax knowing that D-Will will be in a Jazz jersey for the next several years.