Among the five Spanish players who will participate this year in the NBA, the Timberwolves point guard, Ricky Rubio, will be the one with the highest base salary, 17 million dollars (14 million euros), at the same time that he will be the third highest paid of the Minnesota squad.
In total, the wage bill of Rubio, Marc Gasol, Serge Ibaka, and the Hernangómez brothers (Juancho and Willy) will be this year almost 37 million dollars (30 million euros). But there are big differences in the list.
And although Catalan Marc Gasol, 35, is perhaps the most media name on the list, the pivot who in the 2018-2019 season won his first NBA title with the Toronto Raptors, this year begins his first season at the Los Angeles Lakers with a substantial salary cut.
Gasol, who last season was the second highest paid player in the Raptors with $ 25.5 million in base salary, this year has signed with the Lakers for $ 2.5 million. Which makes him the ninth player on the payroll of the Los Angeles team.
Very far from the 39.2 million that the star of the team, LeBron James will make, part of an extension of his contract for which he will receive in the next three seasons around 125 million dollars in total.
Meanwhile, the youngest of the Gasols will receive almost 2.7 million dollars in the 2021-2022 season. All in exchange for playing James and having a better chance at another champion ring.
But it’s not just Gasol who starts the season with a substantial pay cut. His former teammate in the Raptors, the Hispanic-Congolese Serge IbakaThe 31-year-old has also traveled lighter to his new home, the Los Angeles Clippers to be in the company of another former Raptor, Kawhi Leonard.
If last season in Toronto, Ibaka was the third highest paid player with a contract of 23.2 million dollars, in the Clippers, the center will be fifth on the payroll with 9.2 million dollars.
As in the case of Gasol, Ibaka’s contract with the Clippers is for two years. In the 2021-2022 season, the player known off the court for his culinary skills and interest in clothing will earn $ 9.7 million.
Gasol and Ibaka’s pay cuts leave the 29-year-old Catalan Rubio as the highest-paid Spaniard in the NBA. Not only that, the return this year to the Timberwolves, the team with which he disembarked in the North American professional league in 2011, has allowed him to improve on the terms of the contract with his previous team, the Phoenix Sun.
Last season with the Suns, Rubio had a base salary of $ 16.2 million, $ 800,000 less than what Minnesotans will pay him this year. But in addition, the two-year contract with the Timberwolves stipulates that next season he will increase his salary bill to $ 17.8 million.
Who has also improved from one year to the next is Rubio’s teammate in the Timberwolves, Juancho Hernangómez from Madrid, 25 years old. The power forward will be the sixth-highest paid of the new Minnesota project, with a base salary of $ 6.49 million.
Hernangómez has a three-year contract with the Timberwolves valued at a total of $ 21 million, so that next season he will earn 7 million and in 2022-2023 the figure will rise to 7.5 million dollars.
Juancho is the highest paid of the Hernangómez. His brother WillyThe 26-year-old begins his first season with the New Orleans Pelicans this year with a base salary of $ 1.7 million. The center is currently without a contract for next season, when he will become a free agent.