LeBron James rips NBA's salary cap, says Stephen Curry should be making $80 million per year

Stephen Curry and LeBron JamesJason Miller/Getty ImagesLeBron James thinks Stephen Curry is grossly underpaid.

Shortly after the NBA’s free agency period began, Stephen Curry reportedly agreed to a $US201 million contract, the largest in NBA history. But if you ask LeBron James, Curry should be making twice as much.

After a San Francisco Chronicle reporter noted that the value of the Golden State Warriors had jump more than 450% in seven years, from $US450 million in 2010 to $US2.6 billion this year, James used that as an opportunity to rip the NBA’s salary cap.

In commenting on the tweet, James rhetorically asked why the NBA even has a salary cap and said Curry’s new contract should be twice as big, or about $US80 million per year.

Here is a look at what Ann Killion was referring to. The value of all NBA teams is skyrocketing, the Warriors have continued to go up even when most other teams have slowed down in recent years.

And the value of the Warriors should go up even more when they move into their new arena in San Francisco for the 2019-20 season.

The critic will note that the collective bargaining agreement already guarantees that the players are to receive 51% of the league’s basketball-related revenue. But as James is pointing out, annual revenue is not the only money the owners are making. 

While owners are not necessarily seeing immediate returns on the increase in franchise values, there is a lot of money being accrued for the owners in terms of long-term investment in the league that will eventually be cashed in when the individual owners decide to sell their franchises.

This criticism by James is a nice compliment for Curry, but it is also telling for James’ own future in the league.

LeBron has famously taken discounts on his contracts throughout his career and only recently became the highest-paid player in the NBA. But as Brian Windhorst recently noted on ESPN, “[LeBron] is done taking discounts.” 

In fact, it would seem that LeBron wants even more than the CBA says he is entitled to.

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