There are a lot of free agents out there still to be signed to NBA teams. But, the high profile free agent players have all been snatched up within hours of free agency opening up. Players requesting trades despite having a contract doesn’t sit well with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. Silver is taking issue with how things went down in this year’s free agency round. Here is what he had to say about players who are signed to contracts- and then turning around and demanding a trade:
It falls in the same category of issues of the so-called rule of law within a sports league. You have a contract and it needs to be meaningful on both sides. There’s an expectation if you have a contract and it’s guaranteed that the team is going to meet the terms of the contract, and the expectation on the other side is the player is going to meet the terms of the contract,” said Silver. Trade demands are disheartening. They’re disheartening to the team. They’re disheartening to the community and don’t serve the player well. The players care about their reputations just as much. So that’s an issue that needs to be addressed.
When it come to free agency, and how the matters revolving around pending free agents and free agents was handled, Silver clearly has issues with this process as well, saying:
My sense in the room today was, especially when it comes to free agency and the rules around it, that we’ve got work to do, said Silver, who was speaking after the annual board of governors meetings wrapped up.
It’s still the same principles of fair balance of power and a sense that it’s a level playing field. I think that’s what teams want to know. I think they’re put in difficult situations because when they’re sitting across from a player and whether it’s conversations that are happening earlier than they should or frankly things are being discussed that don’t fall squarely within the collective bargaining agreement, it puts teams in a very difficult position because they are reading or hearing that other teams are doing other things to compete, and at the end of the day, that’s what this league is about: competing for championships.
Silver makes it clear:
My job is to enforce a fair set of rules for all our teams and a set of rules that are clear and make sense for everyone,” said Silver. “I think right now we’re not quite there.
We can probably guess Silver didn’t like how that Kawhi Leonard deal went down with Paul George requesting a trade to the Los Angeles Clippers. George just served one year of his four year deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder.