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Phoenix Suns, DeAndre Ayton fail to meet extension deadline

Deandre Ayton, Ivica Zubac
Posted at 5:29 PM, Oct 18, 2021

PHOENIX — Talks between the Phoenix Suns and center DeAndre Ayton’s agents reportedly fell flat Monday, leaving Ayton without an extension heading into the 2021-2022 season.

The deadline was 3 p.m. Monday for the Suns and Ayton to sign a rookie extension with Ayton’s camp insisting that he was worth a full five-year max contract that would’ve been worth $172.5 million.

For comparison, Luka Doncic, drafted third in the 2018 draft by Dallas has received a five-year $207 million rookie extension. (Ayton was drafted first in the same draft). Three additional players from that year's draft have already been given five-year max extensions as well.

Ayton averaged 14 points per game with 10 rebounds and one block per game in the 2020 season and helped lead the Suns to the NBA Finals.

Moving forward, Ayton can enter free agency as a restricted free agent, meaning whatever deal another team offers him, the Suns would be given the opportunity to match it next offseason.

Ayton, who is now reportedly frustrated with the franchise, could also sign a one-year qualifying offer for 2022-2023 with the Suns and then become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2023.