PORTLAND, Ore. — Nassir Little signed a four-year, $28 million contract extension with the Portland Trail Blazers, the team announced Monday.
The news of Little's extension was first reported by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. The Blazers later shared a video on social media of Little signing the contract and the 22-year-old forward spoke to the media about the decision after Monday's practice. He was asked about the advantage of signing now as opposed to waiting to sign a new contract after this season.
"I mean, $28 million is the advantage. The security, the peace of mind, just to have that kind of money locked in and having them show their belief in me means the world," Little said, as reported by multiple media members, including Jason Quick of The Athletic.
The 6-foot-5 forward is entering his fourth season with Portland. The Blazers' first-round draft pick in 2019 (25th overall), Little has averaged 5.8 points and 3.4 rebounds in 16.7 minutes per game over the first three seasons of his career. Last year, he averaged career highs in points (9.8), rebounds (5.6), blocks (0.9) and minutes (25.9) in 42 games.
Little has dealt with various injuries over the first three seasons of his career and has never played more than 48 games in a season. His season ended in January last season after he had shoulder surgery and he had a core muscle surgery during the offseason.
Before Little was injured in January, he was having the best stretch of his career, averaging 13.1 points and 5.7 rebounds while shooting 45.4% from the field and 40.3% from the 3-point line over a 12-game stretch.
Little told the media that he expects to outplay his contract.
"I'm not gonna lie, I think my talent level is worth more than that. But with me having an injury history, and them still taking a chance on me, I want to be here. I'll probably perform at a level that's worth more than that, but being in Portland is what I want," Little said, as reported by multiple media members, including Sean Highkin of the Rose Garden Report.
On Tuesday's episode of Locked On Blazers, host Mike Richman talked about the signing and what it means for Little and the Blazers. He also talked about Portland signing former Florida State wing Jonathan Butler to the Blazers' final two-way contract on Monday, and then after looking at some of the predictions national NBA pundits are making about the Trail Blazers, he made five bold predictions of his own.