Now we find out whether BC's had a good summer
Ready for a big week?
The free agency feeding frenzy begins tomorrow night and while it’s not a bumper crop, it’s not bad.
And around these parts, it’s actually rather significant.
We all know that Shawn Marion, Anthony Parker and Joey Graham are unrestricted free agents, Carlos Delfino is restricted and if the Raptors don’t waive Patrick O’Bryant by Wednesday, he’ll have a guaranteed contract worth $855,189; if they do waive him, they need to write him a cheque for $500,000 to go away.
Marion, of course, is the biggest fish and presents the most significant challenge for Bryan Colangelo.
The GM’s done a good job so far addressing two crying needs in toughness (Reggie Evans for Jason Kapono) and athleticism on the wing (DeMar DeRozan) but he cannot be judged on his off-season activity until we find out what he does with his free agents.
I’m led to believe nothing is going to happen immediately tomorrow night with Marion, one league source said it might take a couple of days for that to shake out, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Toronto didn’t get Delfino done quickly.
Parker and Graham? Again, I get no sense that there’ll be any urgency there. They might get offers, but I imagine teams will want to see how other things shake out before dealing with what have to been as second-tier free agents.
After thinking about it for a little while, you know what else I might do with Shawn, even though I’m virtually sure it’d be rebuffed?
Tell him I’ve got a one-year deal at something around $10 million for him to sign.
It may not make entire sense but if he wants a long-term contract at a rich number, he’s far more likely to get it next year when there could be more than a dozen teams with huge cap space.
It puts a lot of pressure on him – he’d have to perform very well this coming season to earn something the year after but if he’s confident in his abilities, maybe he takes a shot at it.
The big concern, of course, is that a player on a huge one-year deal becomes a tad selfish to boost his numbers and get his name out there but that’d be up to Jay to deal with.
The Raptors? Well, I guess they do it to keep a piece that fits pretty well and they still have all kinds of flexibility next summer to make moves.
Again, I doubt it happens, but if I’m Bryan, I at least broach the subject.
Hey, summer league’s approaching – Toronto’s first game is like July 10 or something – but here’s a little note that I’m sure will miff more than a few of you.
There are no plans at the moment to have television broadcasts of any of the games. Nothing from NBA-TV, nothing from RaptorsTV, nothing from There Are Too Many Channels In The Universe TV.
That means no breathless discussion of how DeMar DeRozan looked playing against true scrubs, no waiting for the broadcast of some game to see if Roko’s lost that ability to dribble out the shot clock like few other guards in the game.
And I don’t believe there will be an ink-stained wretch from Toronto in attendance – money being the big issue, the time of the games being another – so how in the world are we going to discuss something as mundane as summer league basketball? Maybe we won’t be able to, and that’s not a big shame.
Of course, you know who controls the flow of information this week, right? Agents.
General managers are forbidden from discussing their discussions, or their signings, in the moratorium period that ends July 7 this year (it was July 8 last year, I guess the accountants are working faster this time around) so it’s up to agents to leak news out.
Just wanted you to know where it’ll be coming from.
Oh, and for those who aren’t sure about this whole moratorium thing.
In this week, accountants from the league are scouring the books of each team to find all the Basketball-Related Income that’s used to set the cap level for the coming season and the official tax threshold for the season just completed.
We’ll know those numbers late on the night of July 6, I imagine.
I think we’re going to find out a little bit about Anthony Parker this week.
I know there are NBA teams out that covet him – San Antonio, Cleveland and Boston will call again because they’ve been making back-channel inquiries already and all present a more legitimate chance at a title than Toronto does – but I don’t know if chasing a championship is what drives him.
He’s always lauded the Raptors organization and the city, he has a valued place in the locker room as one of the grown up leaders and I’ll be quite interested to see what he eventually does.
I would think a two-year deal at somewhere around $9 or $10 million – the same salary he made last year – with perhaps a third year option would be logical jumping off point.
Here’s one from the mail, I think we’ll parcel one or two out each day to avoid a backlog:
Q: Hey Doug. Every year foreign players are drafted in the NBA, and are left overseas to develop.
1) I imagine that most of these players hope to go in the second round or undrafted, to ensure they receive appropriate compensation if they choose to enter the NBA. But what about players that are drafted in the first round like Christian Eyenga. Do they have the choice to come to the NBA at any point they want and does this guarantee ever expire?
2) Some teams send their players to the D-league to gain experience? Wouldn't it make more sense to loan players (such as Jawai) to the Euro leagues to face better competition (which can be seen in soccer)?
Mike B, Halifax
A: The rights to players drafted in either round remain with the teams that chose them forever. The rights can be traded, of course, but any drafted player has no real say in where he goes, which is why some agents would prefer their kids not get picked in the second round, which allows them to sign a summer-league contract with any team that wants them..
And the league wants to build the talent level and public profile of the D League, which is why they don’t have any kind of working arrangement for signed players with any European league;
Unsigned players can go over there with a team’s blessing, if they’re under contract, it’s the D League or the NBA, no other options exist.