The Phoenix Suns and Deandre Ayton have stalled on their rookie contract extension as the franchise is reluctant to offer a maximum contract.
Ayton has no intention of accepting a deal less than the comparable max contracts signed by several of his 2018 NBA Draft classmates, including Trae Young, Luka Doncic, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Michael Porter Jr., sources told ESPN.
Ayton is eligible for a five-year, $172.5 million extension, with escalators that could reach $207 million if he makes an All-NBA team this season. Many executives league-wide expected a deal to be reached between Ayton and the Suns.
If a deal is not reached, Ayton would become a restricted free agent in 2022 and the Suns would retain matching rights. The Suns, however, risk creating a level of acrimony with Ayton.
Robert Sarver hasn't paid luxury tax as Suns owner since the 09-10 season.