The Atlanta Hawks acquired Thabo Sefolosha in a sign and trade deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder earlier this summer. He agreed to a three-year deal worth $12 million total. Mark Deeks at ShamSports.com has a breakdown of Sefolosha's new deal which shows that the contract is slightly front loaded and decreases in value.
Its not a significant savings on Atlanta's part but is a trend that Danny Ferry has followed with free agents during his time with Atlanta. The best example of this was with the four-year $24 million deal signed by Kyle Korver in 2013. Korver made $6.7 million with the Hawks last season but that total will drop to $5.2 million during the final year of the deal in 2017. DeMarre Carroll's deal last season also decreased in value while Paul Millsap's was for a straight $9.5 million over each year.
Structuring contracts this way adds more flexibility to the team's cap picture in future years. While all of that added flexibility has yet to pay off for the Hawks as of yet, Ferry has been very cautious and mindful of the situation and this is another example of such.