Toronto Raptors guard Fred VanVleet is worried that the coronavirus pandemic will have an effect on salaries in free agency.
The 26-year-old originally had a minimum contract for two years after he went undrafted before signing a two-year, $18 million deal that expires this summer.
VanVleet was in the middle of a career-best season, averaging 17.6 points, 3.8 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game in his first full year as a starter.
He spoke about the situation in a conference call with reporters.
“I think about it. I’m human,” VanVleet said. “I feel like I worked myself in good position. I was having a hell of a year and I was planning on having a great playoffs to cap that off. I think I was in good shape. And I think, more so than worrying about what would’ve, could’ve, should’ve happened is more so like, what’s going to happen? Are they going to move the dates around? Does free agency move? How does it affect the cap? Those types of things are more so what I’m thinking about versus, ‘Oh, woe is me.'”
VanVleet also noted another player, Christian Wood, who faces the same situation and who was in the middle of a breakout second-half of the season.
“You think about not just myself, you think about a guy like (Pistons forward) Christian Wood, who ended up having a hell of a year toward the second half of the season and he’s a free agent this summer. … I think the league and the union will try to do a good job to make sure that the free agents get a fair shake and it’s fair negotiating,” VanVleet added. “Obviously we’ll probably all take a hit at some point, but hopefully the hit is minimized to just this year and so there’s ways to work around that stuff.”
VanVleet will still get paid, but it likely won’t be as much as he expected due to concessions made with the salary cap.