Peace in the valley

Breaking news:

From what ESPN's hearing, the solution is a classic compromise. More cap room, but shorter contracts; before you go and forecast an MLB-like arms race, think about how much money teams have tied up in shitty, useless long-term deals. All this means is that these won't absolutely kill a roster for years, since they'll have some flexibility even if they do continue to make terrible signings (trust me, they will) and these contracts will only sting for so long. You'll see a slightly greater turnover in bad contracts, but never will one or two tie the hands of team. I think this will also help the overall depth of teams that are smart while still putting teams run poorly, not those with less money, at a disadvantage. The players and the league both get what they want, and it works out to benefit the fan on both counts.

And then there's the age limit. I can rattle off a million socio-political reasons why there shouldn't be one, and of course sentimental economics sits squarely on the side of the high schooler with a dream. But one year in college is hardly a life sentence, it gives them some much-needed experience, makes them easier to assess, betters the NCAA, and even if they aren't insatnt, Melo-like stars they still shouldn't lose their allure as pro prospects (see Marvin Williams). Apparently the latter has been a big concernt with international players, who, while wanting to get a lottery promise, also don't want their reputations to be tarnished by growing pains at the overseas pro level.

Also, plenty of high schoolers are nineteen by the day of the draft. I know for a fact that Amare was; LeBron was close, but due mostly to his birthdate. So this hardly spells the end of preps-to-pros, however unintentionally. I don't know, it does seem a little strange that being old for your grade could have the ultimate result of letting you go to the NBA out of high school, while your AAU running buddy has to go play for Duke for a year.

There's probably some stuff to be said about tonight's game, but frankly I think the series is over. Duncan can't continue to be this hollow. Detroit is inconsistent. No one wins in San Antonio, no one wins on the road in this series. And, more importantly, this year's Finals was destined to give us one truly indispensable game, just enough for everyone to rain holy fire down on me for doubting its profundity or value to the lexicon of hoops. Very much like the two teams in it.

No, I'm far more excited to hear that there will be a league next year, so I can see some basketball that, by and large, doesn't make me feel like it's a job or point of professional pride to care.

Yeah, I know. . ."that game was amazing." Fine. Does it make up for the four that preceded it?


At 6/21/2005 2:44 PM, Blogger elandfried said...

My favorite blurb so far about the age limit (from the Daily Shitty on Page 2):

The Lead Item
Two Words For You:

No more LeBron, NBA fans.

No more Kobe Bryant.
No more Tracy McGrady.
No more Jermaine O'Neal.
No more Rashard Lewis.
No more Dwight Howard.
No more Shaun Livingston.

Right, cause waiting one more year for those guys to enter the NBA would've killed us (and them). Jesus. And look at that list! Only LeBron was an instant star. You're saying that Kobe wouldn't have done just as well if he had spent his 18th year playing for a top college program rather than sitting on the bench in the NBA? Give me a break.

That said, it's a retarded rule...some kid will probably hire a lawyer someday to protest it...and everyone will realize what an idiotic thing it is.

But the age limit is old news...I want to know how the new agreement is going to affect free agency (could care less about the other stuff). This is huge for guys like Ray Allen and Sam Dalembert, right? Teams are gonna have like $5 million extra next year to play with.

I love the shorter contracts thing (it KILLS dumb teams). But I think this could lead to teams taking more chances (like say, giving Stromile Swift a huge contract) because they won't have to pay for as long a period of time. So while the length of dumb contracts may decrease, I think the frequency may actually increase because of it.

And how about that escrow fund...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

At 6/21/2005 3:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

although i'm sure if i like it, the 20 year old rules makes some sense. it works for football, but 19 is just dumb. as has been pointed out, this allows some high schoolers to go pro, while guys in the same class have to wait another year. it seems pretty arbitrary. but, here's some good news for page 2: both oj mayo and bill (sky)walker will be 19 in 2007.

unfortunately, greg oden will only be 18 next summer. i hope he was serious about really wanting to go to college.

At 6/21/2005 3:35 PM, Anonymous mega montana said...

i dont understand a 19 year old limit, like it was written above, some guys can still go right from high school, others will not

i think this will be challenged come next may or june and some gifted high school senior wants to declare for the nba to care for his poor family

i dont get it

At 6/21/2005 4:15 PM, Blogger elandfried said...

This is unrelated, but I needed to post this somewhere so that I can one day refer to it and laugh my ass off at the response. This was from a chat on espn.com. And I'm Erik from Chapel Hill.

Erik (Chapel Hill, NC): Do you agree that making Andrew Bogut the No. 1 pick would be a huge mistake for Milwaukee? There is no way a slow, unathletic big guy is going to be a star in this league and if you're drafting No. 1, don't you need superstar potential?

Andy Katz: (4:09 PM ET ) Not at all. I saw the two players with my own eyes. Bogut isn't unathletic. That's a fallacy. He can run the floor extremely well for someone 7-1, 255 pounds. He can handle without hesitation, weave while dribbling and can finish with a jumper and a dunk. Marvin might end up being the most talented player in the draft but taking Bogut is a no brainer with his size, skill and experience as compared to the rest of the players in the draft.

I can't wait for Bogut to flop like so many crappy white centers have done before him...Andy Katz shall have his crow and eat it too.

At 6/21/2005 4:16 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

if they hand out more dumb contracts, that's their own damn fault. the point is, it will harder to get tied down forever by a couple of mistakes. like, the knicks will still be the knicks forever, but at least they have the option of turning it around once they see the error of their ways. and plenty of teams will use this extra cap space as poorly as what they had before, only inflated a bit.

it's huge for those players, but also for franchises that were already in a position to sign one big FA this summer, now can go for two. i mean, sure the suns can now afford to resign everyone, but the cavs can land two all-starish players if they do things right.

At 6/21/2005 4:22 PM, Blogger elandfried said...

Sorry, the Katz chat is just getting better and better...I swear I won't post any more about this, but this is for posterity you understand. Later in the chat:

Ryan (Salt Lake, Utah): All this Bogut bashing is insane. He is the best big man in the draft since Tim Duncan. Having watched him play all year, there is no doubt in my mind that he will be a Duncan type player in the NBA. He will be an all-star in 3 years.

Andy Katz: (4:11 PM ET ) I agree. That's why I'm posting your comments.

Later on...

Andy Katz: (4:15 PM ET ) Back to the Duncan-Bogut comment. I'm not saying he could be Duncan, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Bogut be an all-star in three to four years.

Smart move, Mr. Katz. Finally...

Jimmy (Detroit): Bogut finished 66 in the athletic tests - how good of an indicator is that to his actual athleticism? (Doesnt that mean he would be like Curtis Borchardt/Desagna Diop/Keith Van Horn - ish?)

Andy Katz: (4:18 PM ET ) Forget the numbers. I'm not going to go strictly on his numbers. I watched him play in college and was at his workout yesterday. He is a basketball player who is also an athlete. It takes athleticism at 7-1 to dribble the length of the floor, cross quickly around cones and finish with a jam.

Right, cause testing a player's strength, speed and leaping ability means nothing comared to crossing over some cones! God, I love the draft. It makes people say the dumbest shit!

At 6/21/2005 4:32 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

clearly bogut is a punk and everyone with half a brain wants him to fail. it's really NBARS that he's paraded around like a wise-beyond-his-years prophets of good hoops when he's a 20 year-old who dropped out after two seasons. everything about marvin williams's personality seems to spell next ray allen, but to many he's just a spoiled, precocious, unproven brat abandoning a respectable program. . one year earlier than bogut!

and really, what's worse, for williams to leave a school that's as close to having its pick of recruits as you can get, or bogut leaving a second-tier program that could have had a chance to be elite if he'd stayed there to lift them on his broad, heroic shoulders?!!??

At 6/21/2005 4:48 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

THC is out of commission but wanted me to pass along this wonderful bogut outburst, for those of you that haven't peeped it already


At 6/21/2005 5:25 PM, Anonymous brickowski said...

i miss yuta tabuse already.

At 6/21/2005 6:35 PM, Anonymous aug said...

I don't understand why they don't make it 1 year removed from high school like with the nfl. I'm kind of excited about the age limit. It makes me want to keep track of the guys with the talent to go pro and see if they're gonna dominate like Melo and Wagner did or flop and have to spend an extra year or two to go lottery and actually have to work hard to get in the draft, not just have hype. It's gonna be interesting to see how powerhouse schools like duke, unc, uconn and others handle recruiting guys who are coming into college saying they're gonna leave after their first year. It's hard to get excited about recruiting that kinda guy but you can't pass up on the talent.

On the Bogut issue: Why is a guy whose celing is Vlade Divac, being considered a number 1 overall pick? I'm not even sure he can be Vlade. I'm thinking more of an Okur type but plays more on the inside. Oh well, i'm just happy the magic aren't high enough to take a blow to their franchise by drafting him.

At 6/21/2005 8:40 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

something tells me that there will still be a lot of people drafted on potential. if someone dominates in high school, and then shows flashes as a freshman against decent competition on deep team, we might have a new model for speculative drafting. which could be even worse than either letting people jump from hs or being far more picky about them once they've gotten into the college game.

At 6/22/2005 1:23 PM, Blogger elandfried said...

I think that ultimately the most interesting thing to come out of the new CBA will be the development of the NBDL as a true minor league system. I don't get exactly how that's gonna work (will they have minor league contracts like in MLB, etc.), but I think it's high time it happened. Plus it sets up interesting scenarios. Think about it. Greg Oden could be in the NBDL the year after he graduates high school. I mean, he'll probably end up going to college for a year, but the possibility is there and he would be completely unaffiliated with a team (although if 2 NBA teams share an NBDL squad and they can send an assistant down to work with the Darkos and Skitas of the world, doesn't that give them an advantage if a great high school player ends up on that team as well and forges a realtionship with the assistant BEFORE he is even drafted?!? These are things that keep me up at night). But nonetheless, there could theoretically be a team that has Greg Oden and a guy like Darko on the same team!!! Now, can they put one of the teams in Chapel Hill please?

At 6/22/2005 2:19 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

only notice you'd posted this AFTER i made my long post above re:the NBDL. let the conversation continue!!!!!!

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