Wildly Unnecessarily Lengthy 2014 NBA Draft Board, Part 1: NCAA Centres
June 16th, 2014

There follows the first in a series of posts that breaks down the players eligible, either automatically or by early entry, for the 2014 NBA Draft. This list is for the NCAA centres, or centers if you’d prefer.

As ever, the list is about 35 players longer than it needs to be, because one of these days, the NBA draft will be forty six rounds long. Just like it used to be. On that day, we shall rejoice.

Also as ever, some position assignments are slightly arbitrary, yet, because they matter not on the court, they should matter not in their classifications within this series either. This arbitrariness is particularly relevant to the centres list, because if everyone was listed at the position at which they were likely best, the centres list would have about 12 people and the power forwards list would have about 84.…

Posted by at 7:08 PM

Tim Duncan did indeed get a pay rise
June 14th, 2014

This post is essentially the conclusion to a post from nearly two years ago, dated July 22nd 2012. That post was itself a follow-up to this post, published three days prior. The two posts combined to document an issue, or was at the time a potential issue, of a mistake in a contract.

Sitting in the crowd at the 2012 Las Vegas Summer League, I was talking to someone about the market value of power forwards today. The discussion followed a fairly predictable route, and before long we got to talking about Zach Randolph, who in April 2011 signed an extension with Memphis that was to keep him with the team through 2015.…

Posted by at 1:21 AM

Chandler Parsons And The Rare Instance Of The Deliberate Overpayment
June 5th, 2014

(originally published elsewhere)

After they picked him 38th in the 2011 draft, the Houston Rockets signed second-round pick Chandler Parsons to a four year contract, one that paid slightly but not significantly above the minimum salary.

Giving three year contracts to early second-round picks, or late second-round picks that you really like, or undrafted players you really thought were going to be second-round picks and are happy to get a chance at signing, is a trend that developed some years ago and continues to this day. It requires either cap space or a chunk of the mid-level exception to do it – the Minimum Salary Exception, the device which allows teams over the salary cap to sign players to the minimum salary, or trade for those who already are, is limited to two years in length.…

Posted by at 1:34 AM

The Proportionality Of Fines
June 4th, 2014

(originally published elsehwere)

Last month, the Knicks signed Phil Jackson to a $60 million, five year contract to become their team president, chief roster builder, figurehead and mainstay.

This week, Jackson was fined $25,000 this week for ‘tampering’ Derek Fisher.

Fisher is still under contract to the Thunder until the end of the month, and while the media are deciding which team he is going to join after this season, and whether it will be in a front office or coaching role, Fisher is still a contracted player. For a member of another team to talk about or at least infer the possibility of luring him to their team, then, is tampering.…

Posted by at 1:44 AM

Max Deal The Way To Go With Irving
May 28th, 2014

(originally published elsewhere)

Cleveland committed their future to Kyrie Irving. They picked him first overall, gave him all the reins, and gave him all the plaudits. And yet now there are reports that they do not want to give him a maximum contract extension.

Whether or not Irving is worth the maximum salary is not really relevant here. The point is loyalty, and, more importantly, the perception of loyalty. It is not automatically disloyal to offer less than the maximum salary in an extension to a player you (rightly) do not feel is worth it, but to the player and his powerful agent, it is perceived as so. Anything less than undivided love is insufficient love, because the assumption – fuelled by perception – is that undivided love is available elsewhere.…

Posted by at 1:55 AM

The Declaration Of Sim Bhullar
May 16th, 2014

(originally published elsewhere)

In a post written last month, one armed unashamedly with the benefit of four years of hindsight, I looked back at the decision of one time Oklahoma guard Tommy Mason-Griffin to leave school, declare for the NBA draft and turn professional after only one collegiate season, a poor season that had been mired by underwhelming play and much tumult within the program. In the four seasons hence, Mason-Griffin has missed more than two full campaigns due to injury, yet he has been under contract and thus been paid for his time nonetheless, something which would not have happened had he stayed in college and given his services away for free.…

Posted by at 1:49 AM

Everything I have written this season
May 10th, 2014

Here’s a list of everything I have written this season, whereby a year is defined as July 1st – June 30th, the same definition the NBA uses. (An article from June 2013 is also included for the hell of it.) Having written for many different websites with varying levels of efficiency with regards to archiving, I thought it best to chronicle them all in one place. The articles are loosely categorised, but most if not all pieces could actually fit into multiple categories, so the definitions are slightly arbitrary.

This post will be updated between the date of publication and 30th June 2014. Not listed in any particular order, not even by date, except where obviously so.…

Posted by at 3:04 PM

The Truth About “Parity” in the NBA
May 8th, 2014

[Originally posted on Hoopsworld, 5th November 2013.]

In February 2010, NBA commissioner David Stern spoke ominously of the league’s forecasted $400 million loss that financial year, as well as hundreds of millions more in losses over the previous few seasons. His words were one of the earliest warnings of an impending lockout, a threat that became a reality 16 months later. Financial inequalities and a broken system supposedly saw 22 out of the 30 NBA franchises losing money, and something had to be done to install some parity.

Three months after Stern spoke, the NBA ratified the sale of the New Jersey Nets to Mikhail Prokhorov.

Parity, it is said, is supposed to level the playing field between the large- and small-market teams.…

Posted by at 7:45 PM

Why NBA Teams Sign Players They Don’t Want
May 8th, 2014

[Originally posted on Hoopsworld, 29th October 2013.]

The vast majority of players signed for training camp are signed to contracts without any guaranteed compensation on them.

This, certainly, is no surprise, as it has long been known that most players signed for training camp are not expected to make the team. A few players have fairly nominal guaranteed portions – for example, Dee Bost received $50,000 from Portland, Dewayne Dedmon $25,000 from Golden State, and Trent Lockett $35,000 from Sacramento. Most, however, do not. Teams are not involved in bidding wars for the Trey McKinney-Jones and Carlos Morais types, and thus there is no incentive to give any guaranteed money away.…

Posted by at 7:43 PM

The False Allure Of Multi-Year Contracts
May 8th, 2014

[Originally posted on Hoopsworld, 15th October 2013.]

Unguaranteed or partially guaranteed final seasons are quite the trend nowadays in the NBA, and they have these days almost completely superceded team options. In fact, excluding rookie scale contracts, there are only eight team options in the entire league, belonging to Chauncey Billups, Darius Morris, Timofey Mozgov, Marreese Speights, Carrick Felix, Chandler Parsons, Jae Crowder and Rodney Williams.

All other contracts referred to in the press as ‘team options’ are, in fact, unguaranteed salaries.
There are very few instances in which contracts must be guaranteed. In fact, there are only two; the first year of a signed-and-traded contract, and the first two years of a rookie scale contract (which must be guaranteed for a minimum of 80 percent of the scale amount).…

Posted by at 7:40 PM