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NBA and NBPA agree on new collective bargaining agreement

Good news because it means no pause in basketball

2023 Board of Governors Presser Photo by Jennifer Pottheiser/NBAE via Getty Images

According to multiple reports the NBA and NBPA have agreed to a new 7-year collective bargaining agreement.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski the collective bargaining agreement is expected to be ratified in the next few weeks now that it has been agreed upon.

Here are some interesting changes and highlights of the new agreement.

The NBA is weakening the power of high-spending teams.

From Adrian Wojnarowski:

The NBA is curbing the ability of the highest-spending teams, such as the Golden State Warriors and the LA Clippers, to continue running up salary and luxury tax spending while still maintaining mechanisms to add talent to the roster. The league is implementing a second salary cap apron — $17.5 million over the tax line — and those teams will lose several key team building mechanisms, including the taxpayer mid-level exception, utilizing cash in trades, moving first-round picks in drafts that are seven years away, signing free agent players in the buyout market and taking on more money than is being sent out in trades, sources said.

This means even more parity for the league, which is great for the future of the league and for keeping things competitive for small market teams. In a nutshell, the big market teams have to play by the same rules as the smaller markets and have to make much more savvy moves to stay competitive. The Warriors, Heat, and Lakers are examples of teams that make stupid moves, but because they’re in a big market, they can erase the mistake much easier than someone like Minnesota. The midlevel exception rule is probably the biggest move because it means that they’re stuck with the moves they make, just like smaller market teams. This also means that players that would have gone to a big market now may choose a mid or small-market team which makes free agency even more interesting.

Draymond Green surprisingly had a comment about it that only seems to benefit him and his team (insert shocked gif)

A great example of how high-end teams took advantage of the current CBA was laid out by Woj.

Under these changes, Golden State’s Donte DiVincenzo, Milwaukee’s Joe Ingles, Boston’s Danilo Gallinari, Brooklyn’s Patty Mills and former Clippers guard John Wall wouldn’t have been able to sign with those teams last summer. The Clippers’ acquisition of Norman Powell and Robert Covington last season would also not be allowed as LA took on more money than they sent out in the deal with the Blazers.

Part of this means there are new opportunities for mid and small-market teams

There are moves to help with the load management problem

To help with the ridiculous amount of load management problems going on, there will be a minimum games played requirement to be eligible for certain awards.

In an attempt to curb load management and lost games among star players, the NBA is tying eligibility for postseason awards — such as All-NBA teams and MVP — to a mandatory 65 games played. The 65-game minimum does come with some conditions.

This is a good thing for fans, which it seems like the NBA has forgotten about for a while. How many times do fans pay for tickets to see the best players in the league and don’t get to see them play? It’s a great step but should probably go farther with All-NBA and all star selections too. Fans pay the money for TV and tickets and therefore should be rewarded with seeing their favorite players play. I don’t know why that has to be said but Adam Silver has let that slip the last 5-10 years. Although credit should be given when it’s due and this is a good step.

A new in-season tournament may be here as soon as 2023-24

From Woj:

The in-season tournament could arrive as soon as the 2023-24 season. The event will include pool-play games baked into the regular-season schedule starting in November — with eight teams advancing to a single-elimination tournament in December. The Final Four will be held at a neutral site, with Las Vegas prominent in the discussion, sources said.

Instead of less games we’ll be getting more, but this makes for an experience during the season that could bring more interest from fans.

What do the teams win?

Each in-season tournament game would count toward regular-season standings; the two finalists would ultimately play an 83rd game that would not count in the regular season. Winning players and coaches will earn additional prize money.

Prize money should bring extra interest to all players involved in the tournament and make it fun. The issue with the amount of back-to-backs is something to watch because the NBA still needs to figure out the schedule to keep teams from playing 4 games in 6 nights which leads to bad basketball and players resting.

The prize money is no small amount either.

The NBA is uppling the limits for extensions

From Woj:

The NBA and NBPA have agreed to increase the upper limits on extensions from a 120% increase on a current deal to 140%, which could have a significant impact on the futures of stars like Celtics forward Jaylen Brown.

Under the current rules, Brown would be allowed to sign a four-year extension worth $165 million. With the extension rules increased to 140%, however, Brown — who is set to earn $31.8 million in the 2023-24 season, the final year of his current contract — would be able to reach his four-year maximum of $189 million, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks.

This is a big win for teams hoping to keep their star players. There will still be players that reject these extensions to go to different teams but it will mean turning down large amounts of money. This likely means that it will be even harder for star players to leave their biggest fans for bigger markets. Combine this with the new caps put on large market teams and you cand see how this could help keep players on their teams more likely.

There will be more two-way contracts

From Woj:

There is an increase in two-way contract slots, jumping from two to three per team. Two-way contracts were created in the 2017 collective bargaining agreement as a vehicle for teams to develop younger players. It has been seen as a success, as it’s become a route to players earning long-term homes in the league, and in several cases becoming major contributors.

The reality of this is it’s a big win for developing players. The Jazz have used two-way contracts and have helped them find good players and develop them into NBA rotation players. Woj listed success stories like Alex Caruso, Lu Dort and others. The Jazz have used two-way contracts with players like Trent Forrest who’ve been solid contributors in the past. Having more two-way contracts means a chance to give more players a chance to show their development.

There will be changes with drug testing

It’s an interesting change and makes you wonder what other changes if any might happen.

All in all, it looks like a big win for small and mid-market teams looking to stay competitive with other teams. It doesn’t appear like there will be any changes to the lottery system, but that could come as we learn more.