Updated Contract Situations for Former Vols in NBA

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    With the 2019 NBA Summer League schedule nearly finished up and with all of Tennessee’s former players done playing after being eliminated in the summer league tournament, it’s time to look ahead to where former Vols are slated to play for the upcoming 2019-20 NBA season.

    First, here’s a look at how all of Tennessee’s former players performed in the 2019 NBA Summer League. Now to the contract details.

    Three Vols were selected in the 2019 NBA Draft last month. Grant Williams, Admiral Schofield, and Jordan Bone were all taken in the two-round draft, and all three have inked deals with the teams that acquired them on draft night.

    The Boston Celtics made it official on July 11th that they had signed Grant Williams — the No. 22 overall pick in the draft — to a four-year contract. According to Tom Westerholm of MassLive.com, Williams will make $11.8 million over the next four years, starting with $2.3 million in the 2019-20 season. He and Romeo Langford, the Celtics’ No. 14 overall pick, will both receive the full 120 percent of the rookie-scale contract for which they were eligible.

    Admiral Schofield officially signed a three-year contract with the Washington Wizards on July 12th. The Wizards acquired Schofield with the No. 42 overall pick in the draft. Right now, the full details of the contract haven’t been announced, but Spotrac.com estimates the deal to be around $4.19 million in total. Schofield is estimated to make just under $1 million in 2019-20 and will rise to around $1.5 million in 2020-21.

    Point guard Jordan Bone officially signed a two-way contract with the Detroit Pistons on July 8th after he was officially acquired via a draft night trade with the 57th overall pick. Two-way contracts are complicated with their pay structure, but essentially the way the contract works is that Bone’s salary won’t count against the Pistons’ salary cap unless he appears in more games in the NBA than the contract stipulates. Typically, a two-way contract says a player can’t be on an active NBA roster for more than 45 days lest the team incur a larger salary cap hit.

    It’s believed Bone will begin his NBA career in the G League and play sparingly in the actual NBA with the Pistons this upcoming season. Two-way contracts are non-guaranteed contracts.

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    There are a handful of other Vols who are under contract for the upcoming 2019-20 NBA season as well.

    Tobias Harris elected to stay with the Philadelphia 76ers after becoming a free agent, and he was signed to a max contract. The 27-year-old former Vol was inked to a five-year, $180 million contract during the NBA free agency period that began on July 1st. He’ll make roughly $31 million in 2019-20.

    Harris averaged career-highs across the board last season and was acquired by the 76ers in a mid-season trade with the Los Angeles Clippers. He was pivotal in helping Philadelphia reach the postseason and advance to the second round. He averaged 20.0 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 2.8 assists while shooting 48.7 percent overall, 39.7 percent from three, and 86.6 percent from the free throw line.

    The same day Harris signed his deal with Philadelphia, another former Vol was dealt to the 76ers and became teammates with Harris.

    Josh Richardson was traded from the Miami Heat to Philadelphia on as part of the deal that sent Jimmy Butler to Miami. Richardson agreed to a four-year, $41.9 million deal with the Heat last offseason, and now the 76ers inherit that contract with three years remaining on his deal. The 25-year-old is scheduled to make $10.1 million in 2019-20.

    Richardson averaged career-highs in nearly every category last season. He put up 16.6 points, 4.1 assists, 3.6 rebounds, and 1.1 steals a game in 73 games. He shot 41.2 percent overall, 35.7 percent from three, and 86.1 percent from the free throw line.

    The only other former Vol currently under contract in the NBA is Jordan McRae. The 27-year-old signed a two-year, $1.7 million deal with the Washington Wizards in April of this year that will pay him most of his salary this upcoming season. He’s slated to make around $1,678,000 in 2019-20.

    In 27 games with the Wizards last season, McRae averaged career-highs in every major statistical category outside of three-point shooting. He averaged 5.9 points, 1.5 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and half a steal per game while shooting 46.9 percent from the floor. He shot 28.6 percent from three and 80.0 percent from the free throw line.

    Both Jarnell Stokes and Kyle Alexander participated in the NBA Summer League, but neither has been officially signed to a contract yet. Alexander was picked up by the Miami Heat for their summer league teams, but there’s been no word on his future with the organization or any other NBA team as of yet. Stokes played with the Portland Trail Blazers in the summer league and finished strong in his last three games.

    Stokes has only appeared in 28 total games in the NBA after being taken in the second round of the 2014 NBA Draft by the Memphis Grizzlies. He’s scored a total of 67 points and has pulled down 40 rebounds in 151 minutes in his 28 appearances in the NBA for Memphis, Miami, and Denver. Stokes has played much more in the G League, appearing in 59 games and averaging 17.9 points, 10.1 rebounds, and 1.3 assists in an average of 30.7 minutes. He’s also played overseas in China.



    Nathanael Rutherford
    Nathanael Rutherford is the managing editor and social media manager for Rocky Top Insider. Nathanael graduated from the University of Tennessee and cultivated a passion for the Vols while growing up in Knoxville a mere 10 minutes from Neyland Stadium. He's been a part of the RTI team since November of 2015 and has been the editor of RTI since June of 2017. If he's not talking or writing about Tennessee athletics, he's probably talking about Star Wars.