In the midst of debates about and changes to rules governing how high school players make their way to the NBA, the G League is raising salaries. Up through this season player salaries were capped at $26,000 paid over the five-month season, those salaries will now be raised to $35,000.
The announcement comes in the wake of an inspirational G League to NBA story in Andre Ingram, who spent a decade in the G League before debuting with the Lakers at the end of the regular season. Perhaps more relevant to the issue of pay, however, is the choice of former Syracuse commit Darius Bazley to jump to the G League for his year before the NBA Draft.
“The G League will have the most to offer, considering that is the development league for the NBA,” Bazley told reporters. “I will get more out of that than going overseas. The G League is the closest thing to the NBA. I see most guys now are spending time in the G League even after they went to school and the draft, so this gives me the chance to accelerate the process. There have been a lot of successful guys who have been brought up in the G League, and I’m confident that I will be one of them.”
With slightly higher salaries and proximity to the NBA, the G League is now showing itself to be one of the premier options for high school athletes who just want to focus on basketball. Many athletes have criticized the college experience for athletes, even calling academics useless for star players.
Apart from the $35,000 salary, G League players are eligible for endorsement deals, of which Bazley will likely have several.