I usually leave the cross-sport posts to SB Nation D.C., but since I'm still thinking about Bryce Harper keeping me up as he haggled with the Nationals until the wee hours of the morning over his first contract, I figured this question was worth discussing here too.
The whole Harper/Stephen Strasburg sagas got me thinking a lot about John Wall. We (and all NBA fans, to be honest) are lucky that the NBA has a sensible system that prevents the Harper/Strasburg situation from ever happening (well, except for with Xavier Henry). Rookies are slotted salaries based on their draft position, and there's very little wiggle room (between 80-120 percent, to be precise) for team and player to haggle over the final figures. It's a system that's been around for over a decade, and it works.
Baseball and football, on the other hand, only have an "unofficial" slotting system, one where there are merely recommended figures. There's no mandate for teams to stay within that range, which explains how Sam Bradford gets $50 million guaranteed before throwing an NFL pass. In fact, the Nationals purposely signed their later picks for far more than their recommended slot to try to convince Harper that they'd take care of him. It's anarchy at it's finest.
But it also got me thinking - what if the NBA was like that? What if there was no limit to how much Wall could make on his first contract? What if the Wizards had a deadline to get a deal done before losing Wall back into the draft? How much would Wall's first NBA contract be worth?
I'm curious to hear your answer to this. My guess? Six years, $60 million, with an early termination after the fifth year.