Bill James has an idea to fix the NBA draft and it’s pretty horrible

Bill James is one smart cat, pretty passionate about baseball (downright revolutionary actually), and also good at maths (just ask the Red Sox). One thing that he is not good at: ideas on “fixing” the NBA’s “tanking” problem. Here’s the short version, instead of each player being drafted by one team, up to three teams can draft him, and then they bid.

It’s an exciting idea. About as exciting as making a fourth Matrix movie, only you strip out all the guns, violence, bullet time, spoon bending, and dialogue. Only then shoot the whole thing in one long, continuous take of those green 1’s and 0’s cascading down the screen. So basically take out everything that’s entertaining about the NBA draft, add extra uncertainty, agents, and lawyers, and then add back audio of Jalen Rose reminding us how many journeymen players cleared upwards of $100 million in salary over their career.

So what’s the real fix to tanking? Here’s a crowd-sourced idea. Here’s a better one.