Mark Murphy is on top of it over at the Herald. He discovered that:
According to two league sources, Perkins has already turned down a Celtics offer that is bound by the CBA’s current restrictions — a contract extension worth slightly less than $30 million over four years, which reflects the currently mandated contract limits of a 20-percent increase and a four-year maximum. Perkins, represented by agent Arn Tellem, has opted to wait until he is an unrestricted free agent, when even in an unpredictable market he has a chance of commanding far more.
Indeed, Perkins’ value is much higher when an underachieving center like Dallas’ Brendan Haywood ($46 million over the next six years) is taken into account.
Tellem and Perkins are making quite a gamble here that:
1) Perk has no setbacks in his recovery from knee surgery; and
2) The new CBA doesn’t significantly depress Perk’s market value.
Quoting the Haywood contract makes perfect sense as Perkins is a significantly better player, but doesn’t make sense in that it was signed in an entirely different spending context. Teams had cash to burn last summer, as many had banked cap room for the summer of Lebron. And of course, they were all operating under the current CBA, which, however the negotiations finally shake out between players and owners, is likely to be far more friendly to the players than what’s to come.
Speculation (only): Perk and Tellem are assuming they can get a contract of at least $8M in average annual value, even under a new, more restrictive CBA. That’s their worst case scenario. But more to the point, we can assume they’re shooting for something north of $10M per year. Why else would you take the risk?
From the Celtics side of things, it’s a telling move that Danny Ainge tried to lock Perk up for another four years. It shows how clearly he values #43 manning the paint in the post big-three era and falls in line with the way he locked up Rajon Rondo to an undermarket deal before he could test the free agent waters.