Hey, has anyone besides everybody heard about the rumored Chris Paul trade? Virtually every one I know who likes or deals with sports.
Earlier this week, The Lakers, the Hornets and Rockets worked a three-way trade sending Paul to The Lakers. In exchange, the Hornets would get Luis Scola and Kelvin Martin from the Hornets, and Lamar Odom from The Lakers. The Rockets would then get Pau Gasol.
Actually, this sounds good for the Hornets. They basically rebuild their team and become competitive again. The Lakers get the best point guard in the game, and the Rockets also become more competitive.
So what’s wrong with this? Dan Gilbert, owner of the Cleveland plantation and still smarting over the LB James escape on the Southbound side of the Underground Railroad, believed it was an opportunity for The Lakers to acquire a player from the league owned franchise in New Orleans. It also allowed The Lakers to reduce the amount they owed under the luxury tax rules by $20M. Thus decreasing the share of revenue going to teams like Gilbert’s Cavaliers by $20M. Gilbert objected, and caused the deal to go into the tank.
I thought trades like the one Paul wanted was the reason for this lockout? If that’s not why there was a lockout, why have one?
I’m sure the one thing commissioner Stern did not want was players teaming up to go to coastal cities like Miami, Los Angeles, New York and the like. However, it’s a by-product of his “superstars” marketing campaign. With the focus on individual players instead of teams, players will likely congregate in areas where they have the best chance to win. Because the league did absolutely nothing to address competitive balance…like add a hard salary cap or stop these ridiculous 4-way trades…the NBA is stuck right where it belongs.
As usual, I heard the California Yellers(Fox Sports Radio) state there needs to be a team contraction. I don’t know if that’s entirely true. I think the NBA really needs to focus on a team competitiveness campaign. That means eliminate the separate rules for superstars, aka “getting touched is a two-shot foul but the superstar drilling another player is fine.” Free throw parades for superstars are particularly disgusting.