Adrian Wojnarowski takes the John Calipari rumors one step further Monday, reporting that the Kentrucky coach has informed the Nets --and Kings-- that will take $120 million over ten years to get him to leave the Bluegrass State and run their teams.
Woj details the breathtaking demands...
Nets CEO Brett Yormark is determined to repackage John Calipari as a franchise savior. The Nets couldn't get star players to sell tickets and TV ratings, so he wants to try a star college coach. Again.
Yormark is pushing Prokhorov to reach back to the Nets' Jersey roots, dust off a failed '90s experiment and sell it as something sparkling and new. Twenty years ago, the Nets stunned everyone with a five-year, $15 million contract for the UMass coach. For Calipari to consider the Nets – and, yes, the Sacramento Kings, too – league sources tell Yahoo Sports that the teams have been informed of his asking price: 10 years, $120 million.
When Calipari spoke with minority ownership in Sacramento last spring, he told them that it would take an offer of $11 million-plus a year to get his attention, league sources said. Calipari turned down a 10-year, $80 million-plus offer with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2014, because he wouldn't leave Kentucky with only an incremental raise on what is now an $8 million to $9 million annual package on campus.
Cleveland's offer has become a baseline for Calipari's contractual demands: He wants the 10 years and now the $12 million a year that Phil Jackson makes to run the Knicks.
Why would Calipari be worth that much money to Prokhorov? The Yahoo writer suggests it's all about the promise of delivering superstars to the doors of Barclays Center, but quotes "those close to them" --agents?-- who say "most of his ex-stars remain reluctant to committing to 82 games a year of Cal's abrasive style." .Still, he remains close to many ex-players like John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins, but neither or those players will be available as free agents for two or more years.
Woj also notes that Calipari may be more enticed by the Sacraemento job than the Brooklyn one and adds that for the former Nets coach, the ideal situation would be a bidding war between the NBA's two international billionaires.