NBA Free Agency 2021: Projecting the Biggest Contracts Next Year

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Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, right, looks to drive against Charlotte Hornets forward P.J. Washington in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday, March 1, 2020. (AP Photo/Nell Redmond)

Nell Redmond/Associated Press

There’s a good number of star NBA players who have played for numerous teams during their career. That list includes LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard and Anthony Davis. Milwaukee Bucks star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo isn’t on that list, but it’s possible that will change in 2021.

Set to play his eighth season for the Bucks in 2020-21, Antetokounmpo could potentially hit free agency following that campaign. If he does, he’ll certainly be one of the top prizes of the offseason, as the reigning NBA MVP is one of the best players in the league today.

James, Leonard and Paul George all have player options for the 2020-21 season. And while it’s possible they’ll hit free agency and leave teams, that may be less likely for them than some of the other top players set to be on the market following the 2020-21 season.

Here are predictions for several top players who could become free agents in 2021 and where they’ll end up by the end of that offseason.

                   

Giannis Antetokounmpo, SF

It’s possible that Giannis Antetokounmpo could sign a super-max extension to stay with the Milwaukee Bucks into the future. However, there’s also a chance that Antetokounmpo hits free agency in 2021 and goes on to switch teams for the first time in his NBA career.

Either way, Antetokounmpo is on track to make more than the $27.5 million he’s set to earn with the Bucks during the 2020-21 season. And with plenty of interested teams should he become a free agent, one intriguing option would be him signing with the Golden State Warriors to try to win his first career NBA championship (if he doesn’t win one in Milwaukee before then).

As Josh Schrock of NBC Sports pointed out, Antetokounmpo’s max contract would start at $37.5 million for the 2021-22 season. It may take some work for the Warriors to make it happen, but Connor Letourneau of the San Francisco Chronicle said that Golden State has been “preparing for years to make a bid for Antetokounmpo,” so

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