The Jaylen Brown contract extension talks have hit a ‘pause’
As of July 1, forward Jaylen Brown became eligible to sign a supermax contract extension with the Boston Celtics. Two weeks later though no deal is done, and the delay is starting to become its own story.
Earlier this week, president of basketball operations Brad Stevens told reporters he feels “optimistic” about a long-term deal getting done, following multiple reports using the same terminology to describe how both teams viewed the deal. Yet a day later, the negotiations are now on hold.
According to Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe, the negotiations are now expected to “pause” as Brown heads overseas for a prior commitment. “According to a league source, although talks between Brown and the Celtics have been progressing, Brown, a National Basketball Players Association vice president, is headed overseas for an organizational event, and he plans to meet with the Celtics again when he returns,” Himmelsbach wrote on Friday.
“It’s unclear how long Brown will be gone, but there is expected to be a temporary pause in the negotiations during his absence,” he added. “The source stressed that Brown’s departure is not related to any setback with the Celtics; he is simply honoring a previously scheduled commitment.”
To this point, it hasn’t been reported what exactly the holdup is between the Celtics and Brown’s camp. Brown is eligible for a max contract and the team is reportedly offering him a deal at that level. It’s possible the sides are negotiating over incentives. It could also relate to a disagreement on the numbers of years the contract will be for.
When Brown returns from Europe, there will still be plenty of time to get a deal done with the deadline for an extension not coming until October. However, something both sides will likely be keeping in mind is that if the Celtics want to trade Brown or Brown wants to be traded, he wouldn’t be eligible to be moved until 365 days after his new contract becomes official.
Ultimately, the concern here shouldn’t be that Brown won’t sign the max extension with the Celtics. Boston is the only team that can offer him the max deal, and he’d be costing himself tens of millions of dollars if he chose to hit free agency outright.
It’s what happens next that is the question. For about the last year, there have been rumblings about Brown questioning his long-term future with the Celtics. Asked after Game 7 about his expectations for the offseason, he talked about having a “one day at a time” approach.
So does this delay have to do with Brown’s long-term intentions? It’s impossible to say at this point, but it’s also very understandable why the two have been linked given what we’ve seen in the last year.
Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.