Players who were drafted in 2017 are coming up for contract extensions before the start of the season, including the Portland Trail Blazers’ Zach Collins. John Hollinger of the Athletic breaks down the numbers regarding a possible extension for the big man by the Blazers.
Zach Collins, Portland — $8,964,955
I suspect the Blazers think Collins is worth more than this, and I’m sure Collins’ representation does too. That could set up some possibility of an extension happening, especially given the Blazers’ past history of sticking with their young players.
Nonetheless, if you’re Portland you want to see Collins make it through a full season and prove that he can actually be a full-time 4 as the Blazers envision. Already badly handcuffed on future salary cap flexibility, it would be a painful mistake to pay Collins seven figures annually and have him turn out to merely be a backup 5 behind Jusuf Nurkic. We already saw that movie once with Meyers Leonard.
As Hollinger notes, the Blazers have an interest in seeing Collins play a full season. Collins missed most the the 2019-2020 season due to a shoulder injury, and he missed play in the bubble because of a stress fracture in his ankle. Given Neil Olshey’s loyalty to his draftees, it stands to reason that Collins will land an extension. It remains to be seen whether Hollinger’s estimate will be accurate.
You can read the entire article about the Class of 2017 here (subscription required).