Jeremy Lin and the Hornets’ biannual exceptions

Jeremy Lin of the Charlotte Hornets (Photo courtesy: Instagram/ jlin7)

As Jeremy Lin is still weighing his options on whether to test his market value with the free agency season or opt in of his contract with the Charlotte Hornets, it’s time to look back a the biannual exception he signed with the team last year and how it benefited the player and the team.

The bi-annual exception is used to sign any free agent to a contract starting at $1.672 million. Like the mid-level exception, the bi-annual exception is also split among more than one player, and is used to sign players for up to two years, with raises limited to 8% per year. This exception was referred to as the “$1 million exception” in the 1999 CBA, although it was valued at $1 million for only the first year of the agreement.

An example of the bi-annual exception was the Los Angeles Lakers’ signing of Karl Malone to a contract before the 2003–04 season. The exception was eliminated for luxury tax paying teams following the 2011 NBA lockout as many high spending teams were using this as a tool to gain top paid players.

The Hornet exercised a biannual exception that landed Lin to their roster wherein he signed a two-year contract worth $4,374,255 and this year Lin has a base salary of $2.1 million with a player option on the second year. While playing for the Hornets, Lin has averaged 11.7 points with three assists and 3.2 rebounds per 13.8 minutes on the floor, and potentially increasing his market value.

Going into the summer, Jeremy Lin has been very vocal of wanting to come back to the Buzz City and play another season, however, it seems that he is not in the priority list of the Hornets since their top players are also going into free agency with the likes of Nicolas Batum, Al Jefferson, Courtney Lee and Marvin Williams.

With these developments, rumors are swelling that Lin might pack his bags and head on to Chicago and play side-by-side with Jimmy Butler, or other NBA teams, though no confirmation has been set yet as the NBA free agency formally starts on July 1.

Although Jeremy Lin has already expressed that he is willing to take the pay cut to stay in Charlotte, things might not go as planned as he is in the bottom in the order of business for the Hornets. Thus signing with other teams like the Bulls seemed as the right decision as of this time.

Photo courtesy: Instagram/ jlin7

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