Well, it is official. AI is not opting out of his contract and will be one of nine NBA players who will earn north of $20 million next season.

The good news is as long as he does not sign an extension, he will have a massive expiring contract that could be of great use for the Nuggets.

The bad news is the Nuggets can sign him to an extension at any time up until his contract expires on June 30, 2009. Both the Nuggets and AI have proclaimed that they want to come to terms on an extension and I am pretty sure they will.

My question is why would AI want to stay with the Nuggets if his ultimate goal is to win a championship? Does he really think this team is a legitimate contender next season? Or the season after that?

Why does he want to stay in Denver?

Maybe he knows as well as most GMs do that his style does not necessarily mesh with any of the teams that are on the verge of contending.

At this point I think the odds of AI playing the next three or four seasons in Denver are pretty high so I guess no matter what the outcome of those seasons will be at least we will be entertained.