I personally would like the idea of more of a transfer system in trades. Why not trade cash for players? My idea would be to trade cap space (not as in taking it away from the team that trades it off) for players. The maximum you could trade would be 5 years of an ultra-max deal, how often you trade that is basically up to you since you have to foot the bill in the end but you would be limited by your own cap space. That way you introduce another option into a trade that could help teams in situations like the Kings were with Boogie or the Pacers are with George.
You won’t get picks or decent players back because they were either toxic or on expiring contracts. However, if a large organisation wants them, they could package some smaller picks and 35 mio for 5 years of extra cap space.
Now you might ask: how does that help a small team? Well firstly it would allow any team desperate for picks and young players to have more money available to soak up bad contracts without having to actually pay the players. That’s one or even two really bad contracts which could easily net you several first round picks. Furthermore that cap space becomes trade value again. You can’t trade it back to where it came from but Boston might potentially want to get it for a season or two to give them flexibility in Free Agency without totally demolishing the team… well you have it and you can again make picks or players from it. It also helps fringe small teams who might have a shot at getting over the hump by trading away two or three guys on the bench for some chunky cap space to then go and sign the missing piece in FA.
I think that would be brilliant. The CBA stays in place, as does the salary cap and max contracts, so you won’t have only the rich and big teams buying all the great players BUT it would make the market more active because there are more assets to trade for. You might soak up massive contracts for extra cap space. Those guys might not actually be total shit, just overpaid. So potentially you could complete a rebuild in 2 years time. Your books are clear because someone else pays for the bad contracts outside the cap space, you can still get picks and once you are done with the extra cap space you could flip it to a larger team for a young piece or another couple of draft picks.
Personally I abhore the CBA and all that trade nonsense. I understand that the fans of smaller teams want something to cheer for and that we would like a more balanced NBA but tbh when has the league ever been balanced? And when has any team really been totally dominant for a whole decade besides teams of the 50s and 60s and the time Jordan was around? Even then it took him ages to get to the finals. The Lakers weren’t great in the 70s, they were basically non-existent. The Celtics won 2 but not really in dynasty mode. Take out Jordan in the 90s and it becomes a free for all with Hall of Famers left and right.
It’s not the CBA that makes the league more equal, it’s how much talent there is and how many of them bunch together. However… it has always been that way. Larry played with McHale, DJ, Parish and later Walton while Magic played with Big Game James and Kareem, Isiah played with Rodman, Dumars and Aguirre, Jordan played with Scottie, Hakeem played with Ralph Sampson and later with a bunch of scrubs, Shaq played with Penny and later with Kobe and later with DWade. The original Big Three played in Boston. However none of those teams was really dominant. The Lakers of the 80s got trounced in the Conference finals 86 one year after winning the title, Boston was done by 87, the Pistons were done after 1991, Bird killed the Lakers in 84, and on and on it goes. The Bulls were the only team with 2 threepeats. Maybe the Lakers could have gotten more out of Shaq and Kobe but they got beaten by a weaker Pistons team and should have lost to the Kings… so no again, even though they had two of the top 10 players of all time. Lebron lost against Dirk and his geriatric band of lunatics, even though he had the Big Three. The Big Three themselves won one title. Hell even the Spurs with Duncan, Parker and Ginobli in their prime couldn’t repeat. That’s not because of parity, that is because one or two other teams had a shit ton of talent two. It’s always two or three at the most in each conference.
So why the hell bother with all that bullcrap? For all I care keep the max contract so that it’s basically really a decision of where and for which team you truly want to play because you get the same money everywhere. Keep the cap space too. But stop that stupid Bird Rule crap and stop that stupid “You get more money if you stay crap”. If your only argument to a player, after possibly 8 years with your team, is “Here, have more money.” instead of “You can win here.” “You love your coach here.” “The Fans adhore you here and you love to live here.” “You can become a legend here.” “We are commited to putting a great team around you here.” “Our GM is brilliant here.” then you should lose your player. You have 8 years to see your superstar flourish and decide whether you want to build around him. You have him guaranteed 8 years if you match is restricted free agency deal. So fucking get to work and stop dicking around.
How is it that we make someone feel bad for leaving his team even IF he takes less money and does it for the right reasons (WINNING) when at the same time we love to lorde over them when they don’t win a ring? It’s fucking insane. Stop that nonsense. Let players truely decide where they want to play. It’s severely limited anyway because with 3 or 4 max contracts you are basically done cap wise. So it wouldn’t actually change anything besides maybe, just maybe, having 4 or 6 or 8 competitive teams instead of 2.