In what has to be the biggest Duh of the off-season, the Nets have exercised the 2019-20 contract options for center Jarrett Allen and guard Caris LeVert. As players on rookie deals, Allen and LeVert would have been free agents next season unless the Nets moved to keep them. It will be Allen’s third season and LeVert’s fourth.
There was never any doubt the Nets would exercise the options, which will pay Allen $2.4 million and LeVert $2.6 million. Sean Marks had until Monday to do so. Both have spoken in recent days about their excitement for the regular season to start.
“We’re ready to compete this year.” said Allen.
“Excitement. Everybody’s excited to get going,” added LeVert.
But D’Angelo Russell and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson will now wait until July and free agency for their next payday. They’ll be restricted free agents on July 1.
No problem for DLo.
“I want to win,” said Russell. “I’ve lost a lot in this league, so I think if we win, everyone gets what they want. If you don’t get it here, you’ll get it somewhere else. Winning, I think, is the problem solver.”
In fact, he admitted that he was unaware of the deadline.
“I didn’t know that [deadline], honestly. So whatever happens, happens,” Russell said. “I definitely care about what they think of me as a player. But as far as numbers and stuff go, we’re planning on just playing the season out, going into the summer, seeing how the season goes and just playing it off that.
“Yeah, that’s the goal. You want to earn an extension.You want to sign a contract at the end of the day. As far as the timetable on it, I don’t think there’s any pressure. I try to let my play make that happen. It’s really up to your play. I don’t think you can talk about it or anything. And teams know what type of player I am. I think my play is the only thing that can solidify that.”
Meanwhile, the Nets are getting healthier. Hollis-Jefferson practiced fully again Monday and Shabazz Napier, troubled with a hamstring strain, got in some reps although he’s not been cleared. That leaves DeMarre Carroll and Allen Crabbe, both with ankle issues, still out.