Point guard Mario Chalmers has spent his entire career with the Miami Heat.
Chalmers was drafted by the Minnesota Timberwolves with the 34th-overall pick in the second round of the 2008 NBA Draft and was acquired by the Heat. Chalmers is set to become a free agent after the season and could play for a team other than the Heat for the first time in his career.
It may not be a popular take among fans, but Lang Greene of Basketball Insiders argues Chalmers needs to value money over loyalty and take the biggest deal possible.
“If Chalmers has an opportunity to go get paid this summer he has to go and get the money,” the former player told Basketball Insiders. “If he leaves the money on the table now, he also leaves his biggest opportunity to maximize his earnings on it as well. If he takes a multi-year short money deal now, he won’t get another chance at 31 or 32 [years old]. At that point he’ll be in one-year territory.”
From a financial standpoint, the current collective bargaining agreement (CBA) is driving more parity throughout the league. Sure, the elite level guys are still going to get paid and incoming first round picks contracts are still fully guaranteed.
However, the market for the middle tier free agent has dried up significantly since the new CBA was implemented – and that’s where Chalmers sits.
With Norris Cole waiting in the wings and the Heat possibly having to re-sign their big three, LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, in the offseason, Chalmers could indeed be the odd man out.
Chalmers averaged 9.6 points, 4.9 assists, 2.9 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game during the regular season. He’s averaging 7.1 points, 3.9 assists, 2.6 rebounds and 0.9 steals per game in the postseason.