When a general manager signs a player to a multi year contract what would be a better way to structure a contract, back loading it or front loading it? Who is better to trade at the end of the contract? Example John Doe 4 Years/20 Mill. 1st Year - 5 Mil. 2nd Year - 5 Mil. 3rd Year - 5 Mil. 4th Year - 5 Mil. Bob Nobody 4 Years/20 Mill. 1st Year - 3 Mil. 2nd Year - 4 Mil. 3rd Year - 5 Mil. 4th Year - 8 Mil. Edward Drawde 4 Years/20 Mill. 1st Year - 7 Mil. 2nd Year - 6 Mil. 3rd Year - 5 Mil. 4th Year - 2 Mil. Which of these players (assuming they are having identical seasons) would be worth the most in a trade at the trading deadline in the 4th season? Also is there any point to front or back loading a contract because of the average salary during the term of the contract going against the cap not the salary paid that year to the player?