Forum Blue & Gold: Waiting until just 24 hours before the window closed, it appears the Lakers have reached a contract extension deal with Andrew Bynum. The deal is expected to be a three-year extension for $42 million, which works out to $14 million a year. The Lakers would reportedly have a have a fourth-year option at $16 million. So, in the end, we are talking 4 years at $58 million.

Bynum, who is 21, looked good in the couple of Lakers wins so far this season – he is averaging 10 points, six rebounds and three blocked shots per game, is pulling down 24% of the available rebounds is shooting 53%. He outplayed Clipper center Chris Kaman on Wednesday night. More importantly, he and Pau Gasol seem to be developing a real chemistry, one that will keep the Lakers as contenders (along with that Kobe guy) for the next several years.

This is a pretty fair deal for everyone – Bynum gets a big raise, not quite max but close. The Lakers get a little cushion in case he never fully recovers or reinjures his knees, as the deal can end after three years. Although, my bet, is that in four years the negotiations are far simpler, because he’ll get a max deal.

If Bynum is the future anchor of the franchise when Kobe and Gasol are gone, they need to keep him happy. And that means pay him more than maybe they needed to if they let the market decide is fate this spring (then again, maybe not, he could have drawn a high bid from some team hoping the Lakers wouldn’t match).

Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement that rules NBA contract negotiations, the Lakers and Bynum have until tomorrow. Traditionally teams future (or existing) young stars are signed to an extension by the Oct. 31 deadline, it’s a sign of respect from the organization. Chris Paul, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade all signed extensions by that time. Wade and James also signed shorter three-year deals, making them unrestricted free agents earlier. Don’t get a deal signed and, well, ask Bulls fans how things are going with Ben Gordon.

  • e

    hopefully he’ll keep getting better

  • grungedave.

    oh yea……..82m is too much.
    this deal makes sense

  • lakers08


  • e

    the only thing i worry about is bynum deciding to take it easy from here on forth…see: luke walton, vlad rad

  • Michael_23

    Remember when the Orlando Magic thought they were gonna keep Shaq? Then Lakers offered him something he couldn’t refuse. And remember just recently Elton Brand bolting to Philly after saying he would stay in Clipperland? Lakers are afraid this might happen to Bynum. Bynum is just too good and too young. Lakers cannot risk that happening.

  • Diehardfan

    Financially the best of this deal is that it was almost a 100% sure thing that another team would of offered him the max. So that means that the Lakers would of kept him but of paid much more for him. I am sure that at the same time the short term deal of 3-4 years with the Lakers having a team option in the fourth means that they wont be stuck with a player and contract if he doesn’t work out.

  • David

    This can either be a steal of a deal or a disaster in the making depending on the durability of his knee. Let’s see how he plays throughout 82 games.