LeBron James is the NBA’s highest-paid player this year, but he has no plans of returning to his basketball court. Why? Because LeBron thinks there are more ways than ever for him to impact society and help people that don’t involve stepping on a basketball floor.
The “highest paid nba player 2021-22” is a player who has been playing in the NBA for a long time, but he does not plan on suiting up this year. His reason for not playing is that he feels perfectly healthy and still wants to play basketball.
The names LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Giannis Antetokounmpo are likely to spring to mind when you think of the highest-paid players in the NBA today. Despite being totally healthy, none of those three superstars will make as much money this season as a Houston Rockets point guard who hasn’t dressed up and has no plans to do so anytime soon.
That’s right, John Wall, who hasn’t been selected to an All-Star team since 2018, is the NBA’s second-highest-paid player this season.
This season, John Wall may not play a single game.
Houston Rockets’ John Wall sits on the bench during a game | Tim Warner/Getty Images
Are you familiar with John Wall? You know, the man that lit up the collegiate basketball world at Kentucky and was selected first overall in the 2010 NBA Draft? Is this the same player that appeared in five consecutive NBA All-Star games from 2014 to 2018 and was regarded as one of the league’s most exciting point guards?
That John Wall, yes.
He’s become a forgotten name in recent years due to a series of ailments that forced him to sit out for two years beginning in December of 2018. Wall only appeared in 40 games last season after being traded to the Rockets in the Russell Westbrook blockbuster.
The Rockets decided to sit Wall until they locate a trade partner for the aging point guard ahead of the 2021-22 season, meaning he’ll be watching every game from the bench until then. Given the amount of his existing deal, it might take some time.
This season, John Wall is the NBA’s second-highest-paid player.
Starting next season, John Wall’s yearly compensation for the following four years will be:
$38.2 million in 2019-20 $41.2 million in 2020-21 $44.3 million in 2021-22 $47.3 million in 2022-23
February 5, 2019 — Tommy Beer (@TommyBeer)
For the Washington Wizards in 2016-17, Wall enjoyed his finest season as a player, averaging 23.1 points and 10.7 assists per game. Wall was promptly rewarded with a $171 million contract extension, which began before to the 2019-20 season.
Now in his third year of that lucrative contract, Wall is set to make a whopping $44.3 million this season alone, matching him with James Harden for the NBA’s second-highest paid player. Only Stephen Curry ($45.8 million) will make more money than Wall.
And it’s possible that Wall won’t take a single dribble in a live game all season.
A $44.3 million issue that seems to be insurmountable
It’s feasible that Wall will earn the full $44.3 million he’s owed this season without ever playing a game. The Rockets have declared that their point guard will remain on the bench until a willing trade partner can be found.
That, however, will not be simple.
This year, Wall is owed more than $44.3 million. In the last year of his insane deal, 2022-23, he’ll be paid a staggering $47.3 million. Who in their right mind would give up significant assets to take on the remaining two years of the contract?
It’d be one thing if Wall was still the explosive player he once was, but he’s 31 years old and has only appeared in 40 games since December of 2018. Last season, the five-time All-Star averaged 20.6 points and 6.9 assists for the Rockets, but his output isn’t worth $34 million, much less $44 million. And there’s no assurance that Wall will be able to play at that level in the future.
Wall could just make the easiest $44 million in NBA history if no club takes a gamble on him at this stage in his career and with that much money remaining on his deal.
Spotrac provided all contract statistics.
Basketball Reference provided all stats.
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