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Pelicans-Zion-Williamson

Breaking down Zion Williamson’s total salary from his brief NBA career

Zion Williamson is clearly going to make a lot of money throughout his years in the NBA. But more than likely, he’ll be making the most from his potentially max level NBA contracts down the line.

But for now, Zion is signed to his 2019 rookie-scale deal.

Since Williamson was the first overall pick, he gets the largest chunk of the pie among all rookies. His contract guarantees him the first two years, amounting to a little over $20 million dollars, while he’ll get a cool $44 million in total once the Pelicans pick up his third and 4th-year options.

Zion Williamson’s Rookie Contract:

Season ’19 / ’20 – $9,757,440

Season ’20 / ’21 – $10,245,480

Season ’21 / ’22 – $10,733,400

Season ’22 / ’23 – $13,534,81

105,371.922

But of course, with the coronavirus pandemic suspending play, the salaries given to players definitely takes a hit. Including Zion Williamson’s rookie deal

In the event that a season were to be cancelled due, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski had this to say about the effect on player’s salaries:

According to Article XXXIX, Section 5 in the CBA, players lose 1/92.6 of their salary for every game missed as a result of a force majeure event — this refers to events or conditions that make it impossible for the NBA to perform its obligation under the CBA.

With the league set to resume in Disney World come end of July, we’ll still likely see Williamson in action for at least 8 games. The Pelicans have played 64 games in total so far, which Zion will be paid for including the first half of games he missed due to his injured meniscus to start the season.

Although there is no confirmation of how the salary structure will be determined, if Zion has his 64 games plus an additional eight, that would have his total to 72 games. That would have him missing 10 out of 82 scheduled games. Given the force majeure provision in the NBA’s CBA as detailed by Woj, it’s possible that the deductions could work the same way.

Don’t worry, we’ll do the math for you. That leaves Zion with $8,703,721 of his promised $9,757,440 – a million dollar dock in pay.

But don’t feel sorry for Zion just yet. His biggest moneymakers were off the court anyways, with a $75 million deal with Jordan Brand, and endorsement deals with Gatorade, 2k Sports, and Mountain Dew just to name a few.

Sky’s the limit for the young man’s earning potential.