Here are the full details on the creative Nene contract with the Rockets. Houston signed the veteran to a two-year $20M contract. However, the base comp for 2019-20 is $2.56M comparable to a minimum contract (but signed using the bird exception) with $7.44M in likely bonuses, bringing his cap hit to $10M this season. The full $10M cap hit can be used in a trade after Jan. 15. and is now a valuable trade chip. The bonuses in his contract are broken down into 3 categories;
1) $2.435M for playing at least 10 games and 52+ wins;
2) $2.5M for playing at least 25 games and 52+ wins;
3) $2.5M for playing at least 40 games and 52+ wins.
The bonuses are deemed likely because Nene played in 42 games last season and the team won 53 games. Had the bonuses been unlikely, the Rockets would have been capped at $384K (15% of his salary) in bonuses that could be added for this season. The Rockets are now $353K below the luxury tax, not including the $7.44M in likely bonuses for this season. The $2.69M base comp in 2020-21 becomes fully guaranteed if Nene is not waived by Feb. 15., 2020, nine days after the trade deadline.