Cuban Sanction

Tom Spurgeon and I will post another NBA Preview this October, but the league has been going through upheval thanks to a weird, one-time clause in the new collective bargaining agreement, allowing teams to cut one player (they still have to pay him) to remove his salary from their luxury tax. It’s a complicated issue, but the upshot is that about 20 teams have cut players whom they’d recently given big contracts to.

Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, just wrote about his decision to cut Michael Finley, saving the team around $90 million. It’s a neat post, because it provides some insight into the financial landscape of the NBA, and philosophies on player development:

When the annual league revenue increases stopped and a luxury tax loomed, teams adjusted their financial profiles. To get under the tax threshold, they offered good players packaged with horrible contracts. We took them. We hoped the talent would get us a championship before the number of bad contracts we took on in trades caught up with us.

It didn’t happen.

Of course, he never does get around to explaining the Raef La Frentz contract . . .

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