While Jones calls it a "poison pill" deal, that's not quite right: the "Poison Pill provision" is a specific rule in the collective bargaining agreement relating to trading players who have signed extensions that have not yet gone into effect. Also, Jones compares Evans' offer to those of Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik. That strikes me as impossible, being that those two were Early Bird restricted free agents with offer sheets signed under the Gilbert Arenas provision. That provision doesn't apply to Evans, who with four years in the league isn't up for Early Bird rights.
The Pelicans could frontload the contract to make it onerous on the new ownership group, though. Here's what a normal free agent four-year, $44 million contract would look like.
2013-14: $10.3 million
2014-15: $10.8 million
2015-16: $11.2 million
2016-17: $11.7 million
NBA rules allow for signing bonuses of up to 15 percent. But they don't affect the cap hit for each year -- that stays normal. It's just the salary paid out that gets changed. Here's how that would if the Pelicans fully frontloaded the deal.
2013-14: $15.2 million
2014-15: $9.1 million
2015-16: $9.6 million
2016-17: $10 million
Again, that's actual money paid out. The signing bonus would be $6.6 million. The cap structure would look the same as a normal deal. The Pelicans could frontload it a bit more by making it a decreasing contract other than the standard increasing one, but that's not a huge deal.
So basically, there's little the Pelicans can do to discourage Sacramento if the Kings are willing to pay that price and have the cashflow to pay out a big signing bonus. There's not Linning or Asiking going on here.
The bigger concern is where Tyreke's head is at. Does he really think this franchise doesn't care about him because it reached out to DeMarcus Cousins (who is not a free agent) first?