As a part of the trade sending Steven Adams to New Orleans, the Pelicans and Adams agreed to a two-year contract extension, sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe on Monday evening.
The extension, which is fully guaranteed according to sources, is for two years and $35 million. Adams is in the final year of a four-year, $100 million deal he signed with Oklahoma City prior to the 2016-17 season. He is set to make $27.58 million in 2020-21.
With Adams locked into an extension, the Pelicans have shored up their frontcourt mate next to 20-year-old Zion Williamson for the next few seasons.
Because Adams did not waive his trade kicker in the deal that sent him to New Orleans from Oklahoma City, he was eligible to sign an extension with New Orleans right away rather than having to wait months to do so, per the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement.
Adams averaged 10.9 points and 9.3 rebounds last season for Oklahoma City. As much of a force as Williamson was on the offensive glass last season, Adams adds even more on that side of the floor.
While Williamson finished 12th in offensive rebounding percentage (9.3%) among players who played at least 25 minutes per game last season, Adams was second (12.8%), behind only Andre Drummond (12.9%).
Adams doesn’t stretch the floor next to Williamson, as he has made only one 3-pointer in his career — although that did come against New Orleans last season on Feb. 13, 2020, in his new home inside the Smoothie King Center.
He does, however, bring the fourth-highest field goal percentage (58.9%) in NBA history with him.