Derrick Favors

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has signed forward/center Derrick Favors to a multi-year contract extension. According to Yahoo Sports, the deal is for four years, $49 million.

That’s a lot of money for a young player who, while capable of rebounding, shot-blocking and playing good defense, still has a lot of developing to do.

According to Yahoo, “the deal includes bonus incentives that could push the package well over $50 million, sources said.”

“We have tremendous respect for and confidence in Derrick and see him as an important part of our future. He brings a toughness and defensive mindset that make him a key piece to what we are trying to build here,” said Jazz General Manager Dennis Lindsey. “Derrick is also a high-character individual and he has shown a dedication to continue to improve all aspects of his game.”

The 22-year-old Favors (6-10, 248, Georgia Tech) will be entering his fourth NBA campaign in 2013-14, and has improved his averages in every major statistical category over the previous year each of the last two seasons. Favors played in 77 games (eight starts) in 2012-13, averaging career-highs of 9.4 points, 7.1 rebounds and 1.69 blocks in 23.2 minutes per game. Favors registered nine double-doubles on the season, scoring in double figures 34 times while grabbing double-digit rebounds in 16 games. In his eight starts last season, Favors averaged 10.1 points, 10.0 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 2.25 blocks in 27.3 minutes.

Noted for his defensive mindset, Favors was chosen to participate in the 2013 USA Basketball Men’s National Team Mini-Camp held this past July in Las Vegas, Nev. The previous summer Favors was one of just 13 players chosen for the 2012 USA Men’s Select Team that trained against the USA Basketball Men’s National Team prior to the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

“We have been impressed with Derrick’s hard work, development and strong desire to be a part of the future of the Jazz franchise,” said Steve Miller, President of Miller Sports Properties. “There was mutual interest in Derrick remaining part of our team moving forward and my family and I are excited to be able to announce his contract extension.”

A 2010 first-round pick (third overall) by New Jersey, Favors was acquired by the Jazz on February 23, 2011 and was selected to the NBA’s All-Rookie Second Team following his first year. During his second season with Utah, Favors was chosen to compete in the Rising Stars Challenge during 2012 NBA All-Star Weekend in Orlando. The Atlanta native and former MVP of the McDonald’s All-American Game was selected as the 2010 ACC Rookie of the Year during his lone collegiate season at Georgia Tech.

“I would like to thank the Miller family and Jazz organization for their trust and confidence in me and my abilities to help lead this team into the future,” said Favors. “Utah has become my home and I am excited to be able to continue my career playing for the Jazz and the best fans in the NBA.”