Anthony Davis signs record deal with Pelicans

Anthony Davis put pen to paper early Thursday morning, signing the richest contract in league history to remain with the New Orleans Pelicans.

The Pelicans did not disclose the terms of the deal, but sources told ESPN.com that the five-year extension is estimated at nearly $145 million and will kick in starting with the 2016-17 season and run through Davis' 28th birthday.

Although the contract was signed the minute he was allowed to, it was actually midafternoon Thursday in Hong Kong, where Davis is traveling.

"Words cannot describe the excitement of the New Orleans Pelicans to have Anthony Davis as the cornerstone of our organization," Pelicans general manager Dell Demps said in a statement. "Anthony is a great person, a phenomenal player and the ideal representative of his family, the Pelicans and the New Orleans community.

"We are thrilled to have Anthony commit to the Pelicans as we continue to build our team to have sustained success."

The Pelicans also officially re-signed free agents Omer Asik (five years, $60 million), Alexis Ajinca (four years, $20.2M) and Dante Cunningham (three years, $9M) when the signing moratorium ended.

"The Pelicans are proud to welcome the return of Omer, Alexis and Dante to our team," Demps said in a statement. "All three players were key contributors on our team last season. We are happy all three players elected to return and continue our quest to become an elite team in the NBA."

While Davis wasn't in attendance at the group signing, he was there in spirit.

In April, in his first trip to the postseason as a pro, Davis joined Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain and Bob McAdoo as the only players in league history ‎to average at least 30 points and 10 rebounds in their first four NBA playoff games.

During the 2014-15 regular season, Davis led the league in blocks per game (2.94) while ranking fourth in scoring (24.4 PPG), seventh in field goal percentage (.535) and eighth in rebounding (10.2 RPG). His player efficiency rating of 30.8 was good for 11th all-time in terms of single-season PER.