Hours after locking up Danilo Gallinari to a long-term deal, the Denver Nuggets and Kosta Koufos have agreed to a $9 million, 3-year contract.
Koufos has seen inconsistent playing time so far this season, starting five games but also receiving six DNP-CD. He is shooting .552 from the field and is averaging 3.5 points and a career-high 3.6 rebounds.
While it seems like a lofty deal for a player that only averages 10.3 minutes a game, it actually was a smart move for the Nuggets. Koufos, who would be a restricted free agent this summer, would more than likely see a similar or even larger deal this summer. He also barely turns 23 in February and is one of the youngest players on the Nuggets roster.
With the recent extensions to Gallinari and Koufos, the Nuggets now have seven players under contract through 2015. It also means that going into this summer the only two free agents the Nuggets have are Andre Miller and Rudy Fernandez (who is a restricted free agent). Denver also must decide what to do with Wilson Chandler, who isn’t eligible to return to the NBA until April.
With the two extensions the Nuggets will have around $55 million on their books this summer. If Denver decide to use the amnesty clause on Chris Andersen it would free up around $10 million over the next two years and it would give the Nuggets a little financial flexibility this summer to offer an extension to Ty Lawson and possibly Timofey Mozgov.