The NBA and Players Association may be meeting more regularly now, but I'm not getting my hopes up that anything gets done before the current CBA expires next month. If they're still negotiating into August, then there's not really a significant impact. It's when we start getting into September and October that games are going to be impacted.
The owners are still shooting for the moon with their proposal and not budging much. Their latest "concession" according to ESPN is to not start the hard cap until the 2013-14 season,
The league, sources said, regards this as a major concession, since the next two seasons would employ a salary-cap system with luxury-tax penalties not unlike the system currently in place. Teams currently operate with a salary cap of $58 million per franchise, with a dollar-for-dollar luxury tax imposed for every dollar teams spend over the tax threshold of $70.3 million.
Other items of note from the owners proposal:
- "15 percent, 20 percent or 25 percent to current contracts depending on salary levels"
- "Even lower salaries for rookies than they currently make based off the league's rookie scale"
- "[Calls] for the ability for each team to shed one contract outright before next season through a one-time amnesty provision that wipes that contract off a team's books -- even though the player must still be paid"
After the lottery next week, teams will know for certain where they're slotted to pick. With that, the biggest rookie combine of the season gets underway where the majority of US players will be there (international players are still playing for their respective leagues). Draft Express has a list of the players that are scheduled to attend.
The good old days of SWARM... John Hollinger lists his no-stats All-stars for those players that won't put up big numbers but have great overall +/- numbers when they're on the court. On that list is Earl Watson:
Another hardy perennial on the plus-minus leaderboard, Watson can baffle with his offensive decision-making at times, but he is an underrated defender who can guard either backcourt spot. Nobody remembers this anymore because the wheels came off for the Jazz halfway through the season, but Watson's defense was the catalyst behind Utah's suffocating second-unit play in the first half of the season.
We never saw SWARM again after Memo's return. The five-man units were never the same as rotations changed. Then injuries hit the team which led to more lineup changes and then of course The Retirements and The Trade happened.
That second unit may be one of the underrated things I miss most about last season.
Here's a workout video from potential draft pick Enes Kanter. He's listed as 6' 10" with shoes on. Does it look like he's working on a 7-foot rim to anyone else? Also, he never misses a shot! Unbelievable.
Enes Kanter NBA Draft Workout with Tim Grover presented by SLAM and CityLeagueHoopsTV (via CityLeagueHoopsTV)
Thursday open poll... Non-Jazz related... Once the playoffs are over, I'll need something to watch at night. I'm only really only going to be able to invest time into one or two shows. Any recommendations? It can be a drama, comedy, whatever.