Top Stories

RJ Barrett signs contract extension with Knicks

The former No. 3 overall pick has signed a four-year extension with New York.

Knicks guard RJ Barrett has improved his scoring average in each season of his NBA career.

RJ Barrett and the New York Knicks have officially agreed to a contract extension, the team announced on Thursday.

ESPN first reported the agreement, saying the four-year deal could be worth up to $120 million.

“We are thrilled to announce a well-deserved extension for RJ Barrett, a core piece of our team’s foundation,” said Knicks president Leon Rose. “At only 22 years old, he has elevated his game each season, solidifying himself as a force on both ends of the court. We believe he will continue to improve because of his passion for the game and dedication to his craft. We want to continue to build our team and culture around players like RJ who possess these values and qualities.”

Barrett, 22, is entering his fourth season with the Knicks and has seen his scoring numbers climb in each of the last two years. He averaged 14.3 points per game as a rookie, then 17.6 ppg. in 2020-21 and 20 ppg. this past season.

And he’s done it all as a starter; Barrett has come off the bench in just one of his first 198 NBA regular season games.

An extension for Barrett had been on hold as the Knicks were in talks with the Utah Jazz for a potential deal for Donovan Mitchell. New York agreed to move on from the pursuit of Mitchell — who later was acquired by Cleveland — and retain Barrett.

The 6-foot-6 wing out of Duke was the No. 3 pick in the 2019 draft. He will make about $11 million this coming season, the last of his rookie deal, and the extension will start with the 2023-24 season.

Additionally, Barrett becomes the first Knicks first-round pick to sign a multi-year extension since Charlie Ward did so in 1999.

The Knicks went 37-45 and missed both the playoffs and the Play-In Tournament last season. In 2020-21, the Knicks surprised many by going 41-31 and finishing fourth in the Eastern Conference before eventually losing to the Atlanta Hawks in the first round of the playoffs.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.