Jakob Poeltl gives encouraging comments on 2023 free agency

When the San Antonio Spurs signed Jacob Poeltl at a three-year, $26.3 million deal in 2020, it wasn’t a big gamble based on the promise he showed. His rise since then has made him one of the biggest bargains in the NBA, one that could come back to bite them under the wrong circumstances.

“The downside of the team-friendly deal is that Spurs are limited to what they can offer at center in an extension,” ESPN’s Bobby Marks said in his off-season guide (subscription required). According to Marks, Poeltl can sign a four-year, $61.5 million extension, which would put him in the bottom half of starting centers with an annual salary of $13.7 million.

Poeltl averaged 13.5 points, 9.3 rebounds and 1.7 blocks this season and earned $8.75 million. He will obviously have to receive a considerable increase in his salary after his remaining $9.39 million is paid for the 2022-23 season. If he has a repeat performance this year with no extra time in place, it could be down to a bigger salary from another team that Spurs can’t offer.

In an interview with Australian sports portal LAOLA1.at, Poeltl shared some thoughts of his future and what he will prioritize.

Here is the original quote, as freely translated from German to English by Google: For me, the question is where I feel most comfortable and where I can take my lifestyle to the fore, not whether I can tease a few million more.”

What this seems to indicate is that Poeltl might have higher priorities than getting a big payday for his next contract, possibly leaving another team-friendly deal in the form of an extension on the table. “We’ve been able to build great chemistry…and do a lot more on our own…that’s why I really like it and can imagine staying here,” Poeltl continued. “The conditions are perfect.”

Still, Jakob is well aware that players whose contracts are expiring are always more tempting in trades, so he’s ready for anything this offseason. “I’ve been through this before,” he told LAOLA. “It’s nothing new to me. I’ll go my own way.”

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Poeltl goes on to say that he knows his value and what he brings to the team which the whole fan base noticed last season. Ultimately, we’ll have to wait and see what the front office does with their rising big man, but it’s good to know that they’re hoping it works out in Alamo Town.


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