Kevin Huerter agreed to a rookie contract extension on Monday, locking up his long term future with the Atlanta Hawks. Over the next four seasons, he’ll earn a total of $65 million, just north of $16 million per year, and continue to build towards a championship in Atlanta.
Huerter is well-deserving of the sizable payday after a strong postseason that saw him average 11.1 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game, while shooting 34.7 percent from beyond the arc. He served as a pivotal part of the well-rounded group of wings that helped carry the Hawks to an Eastern Conference Finals appearance.
As a reliable shooter and developing playmaker, Huerter almost could’ve commanded a higher price from Atlanta’s front office or from another team in restricted free agency next offseason. However, the 23-year-old had a healthy perspective on the amount that he did earn on his new contract.
“The NBA does a good job of making $100 million seem like not a lot of money. To the rest of the world, my friends, my peers, my family, even $1 million is a lot of money,” Huerter said Tuesday, per The Athletic’s Chris Kirschner. “I tried to keep that in perspective throughout the whole thing. It’s life-changing money.”
Kevin Huerter: "The NBA does a good job of making $100 million seem like not a lot of money. To the rest of the world, my friends, my peers, my family, even $1 million is a lot of money. I tried to keep that in perspective throughout the whole thing. It's life-changing money."
— Chris Kirschner (@ChrisKirschner) October 19, 2021
Huerter signed the deal just in time for the start of the 2021-22 regular season. The Hawks, who will open up the season against the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday, have hopes of mounting another deep playoff run next spring and will need the 23-year-old to be a major contributor again to navigate the reloaded Eastern Conference.
With a new contract to give him some financial security and another year in the NBA under his belt, Huerter seems to be up for the task.