The biggest name to be traded as the clock moved to 3 p.m. was J.J. Redick, which Chris Sheridan talked about here.
With teams trying to get under the luxury tax, we are now expected to deal with smaller moves and deals that have next to no immediate impact on the court, like the ones the Golden State Warriors made at the final hour, from Rusty Simmons of San Francisco Chronicle: “The Warriors avoided paying the league’s increasingly punitive luxury tax at the last possible second, dealing away end-of-bench players Charles Jenkins and Jeremy Tyler minutes before Thursday’s trade deadline.
This is how business is done now in the NBA. No blockbuster trades in February. Few, if any teams are willing to absorb future salary, which would clog up their books and restrict access to tools needed to improve their rosters. Nobody is willing to give up draft picks as incentive to move a contract or rent a player for the stretch run. No more Monopoly money.
What Stern, Hunter, Adam Silver and the rest accomplished two summers ago became as clear as daylight Thursday. They turned the NBA into the NFL — the No Fun League — when it comes to the trades and in-season player movement. No more stars forcing trades to the markets of their choosing with the reward of max dollars forming the cherry on top.
“This is a pure CBA deadline,” one general manager said Thursday after the dust settled. “If you can’t get a first for J.J. Redick, this is a different world. That guy is a surefire lock to garner a first round pick in the past.”
We may not like the snooze-moments that the deadline brought us under the new rules of the CBA, but one thing is for certain: big changes were made during the lockout, and Stern wasn’t kidding when he said competitive balance would improve in the long run because of it. Slowly but surely, the way the league operates is changing in a big way.
Onto other news from around the league: