Since Dwight is the reason I'm writing this I'll use him as an example.
Every time I read an article about Dwight it always has the same thing in it. "Dwight needs to be traded by the deadline or the Magic have the advantage by being able to offer him $25-30 mil more then everyone else and who could resist losing that much money". Well why yes they can offer him the best deal how much is Dwight really losing?
Teams who sign guys can only offer 4yr/$74mil while the team with the bird rights can offer 5yr/$102, meaning 18.5 per compared to 20.4 per. That works out to be about 1.9 million less per year. Where everyone loses sight of reality is where they think Dwight would lose about $28 million.
Should Orlando play hard ball with him and he is forced to sign with NJ he will be losing out on 7.6 mill over the first 4 years, not $30 mil. After Dwight's contract is up he'll be 30 and will be primed to sign another max deal. At this point the team that signs him will have his bird right and be able to sign Dwight to the 5yr/$102 mil deal. What does this all mean?
Well Dwight's 1st year of his new contract will be the same as his 5th year should he resign in Orlando meaning, he will be making the same amount that final year. Taking that into consideration Dwight will lose over the course of the next 5 years 7.6 mil. Is that enough to keep him, who knows, but what we do know is that when people say he's going to lose out on close to $30 mil if he doesn't re-up with Orlando should they not trade him are not comparing apples to apples. That is simply not true and I don't understand why very few people can understand this cause it's written in every article I read yet no one points this out.