Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra and Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr could see their salaries “vastly increase” if they coach beyond the 2023-24 season, according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst.
Windhorst explained that the new deal for Detroit Pistons head coach Monty Williams will impact how Spoelstra and Kerr – two of the league’s most successful coaches – get paid on their next deals.
“Williams reached one NBA Finals as coach of the Phoenix Suns in 2021,” Windhorst wrote. “His contract number is likely to create the biggest effect in the coming years. Kerr and Spoelstra both earn in the $8 million per year range, according to [Adrian] Wojnarowski. Kerr last signed an announced extension in 2018. The Heat last announced an extension with Spoelstra in 2019.
“If both continue to coach past the upcoming season, their salaries are about to vastly increase and potentially reset the market.
“Whether it is said out loud or not, it is true. And it is an underlying situation as they try to get Team USA to the gold at the World Cup.”
Williams agreed to a six-year, $78.5 million deal with the Pistons this offseason, rivaling the contract of San Antonio Spurs legendary head coach Gregg Popovich.
Windhorst noted that Popovich’s salary has long been known to be the highest in the league, but made sure to point out that it’s never been publicized. It was recently reported by Wojnarowski that Popovich’s deal is worth “more than $80 million.”
Kerr and Spoelstra could get deals that rival those numbers as they are reportedly both in the final season of their contracts.
Earlier this summer, Wojnarowski reported that Spoelstra could be worth $20 million a year on the open market.
Spoelstra has led Miami to the NBA Finals six times in his head coaching career, including twice in the last four seasons. The Heat have won two titles under Spoelstra, and they’ve made the Eastern Conference Finals in three of the last four seasons.
The Heat would be smart to get an extension done with him and not let him hit the open market. There’s no doubt that Spoelstra is one of the best coaches in the NBA, and it would make sense for the Heat to do whatever it takes to retain him.
The same can be said for Kerr, who has led the Warriors to four NBA titles and six NBA Finals appearances in his coaching career. Golden State most recently won a title during the 2021-22 season against the Boston Celtics.
There reportedly have been some whispers that Kerr is burnt out and may retire. Perhaps the 2023-24 season will be his last as a coach.
Williams and Popovich have certainly set things up for other established NBA head coaches like Kerr and Spoelstra to cash in on their new deals given their success with their respective franchises.