JeffB
https://theathletic.com/1767204/2020/04/22/will-fred-vanvleet-have-to-bet-on-himself-a-third-time?source=shared-article

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He might not be as suspicious in nature as his Raptors point guard mentor, Kyle Lowry, but Fred VanVleet is not one to just accept things as they are presented to him.
 
VanVleet joined local reporters for a conference call on Wednesday afternoon. When I asked him what his workout setup was at his home in Rockford, Ill., and what he was doing to stay in shape, he suggested that I might be a spy for Raptors president Masai Ujiri. My next query was about what his intentions might be as a free agent, as the suspension of league play might dramatically change how much money is available to players on the market this offseason.
 
“You definitely work for Masai now,” VanVleet said.
 
VanVleet, who started each of the 48 games he played this year, is at the centre of what will become one of the biggest subplots following the suspension and possible cancellation of the 2019-20 season once a final decision about its fate is made. As the league and the players association collectively bargained, the salary cap for each upcoming season is determined by the basketball-related income (BRI) produced the previous year. Without getting deep into the weeds of the CBA, half of the BRI goes to the owners, with the other half going to the players. The salary cap dictates how much money teams can spend under the cap, while also determining the worth of the maximum and minimum salaries, as well as various cap exceptions teams can use to acquire players.
 
Assuming Anthony Davis elects to stay with the Lakers, a safe bet, you can make the case that VanVleet will be the best unrestricted free agent available. He is at the very top of the point guard market. He is just 26 but has plenty of playoff experience, and his timeline would figure to mesh well with the youth-oriented, rebuilding teams that project — or at least projected — to have money to spend this year. There will be point guard-needy teams, such as Detroit and New York, who should still have cap room, regardless of where the figures wind up.
 
However, with the league set to scrap about a quarter of its regular season schedule and maybe lose its entire playoff slate, not to mention the hit that the NBA took with the kerfuffle in China in the preseason, it is feasible that BRI, and the cap in lockstep with it, could actually go down this year. For years, the league has operated under the assumption that the cap will continue to rise, which makes perfect sense right up until a pandemic changes everything. There could be less money for all free agents, with VanVleet near the top of the list.
 
“It sucks because guys work their whole lives for this moment,” VanVleet said. “You think about not just myself, you think about a guy like (Pistons forward) Christian Wood, who ended up having a hell of a year toward the second half of the season and he’s a free agent this summer. So what does that mean for somebody like him? But I think that the league and the union will try to do a good job to make sure that the free agents this summer get a fair shake, and it’s fair negotiating.
 
“Obviously, we’ll probably all take a hit at some point, and hopefully the hit is just kind of minimized to just this year, and so there (are) ways to work around that stuff. But at the end of the day, I think people’s health and wellbeing and frame of mind is a lot more important than a couple million here or there, because we’re all filthy rich compared to what we came from in the first place. So I don’t think anybody’s crying over it. I just think that it sucks when you do start to think about what woulda happened, shoulda happened, so try to stay away from that (type of thinking) as much as possible.”
 
VanVleet’s ability and willingness to put things in perspective is appreciated, but it is hard not to feel at least a modicum of sympathy for him, as he has approached his career so intelligently. His “bet on yourself” mentality memorably unfolded on draft night, but it also played a part in the signing of his second NBA contract in the summer of 2018.
 
As an undrafted player, VanVleet was a restricted free agent in 2018, with the possible value of the first two years of his deal capped at the mid-level exception. While it is unclear what his options were, as there were no reports of a team offering VanVleet a long-term deal, the point guard ended up signing a two-year, $18-million contract with the Raptors in part because he wanted to hit unrestricted free agency earlier in his career. (Players picked in the first round can manipulate things to ensure they are unrestricted at the end of their fifth season, but that requires making sacrifices such as accepting what is oftentimes an under-market qualifying offer for that fifth season. Generally, players only hit unrestricted free agency in their fourth season or earlier because they failed to sufficiently impress teams near the start of their careers. VanVleet, a fourth-year player, is an exception.)
 
Now, with VanVleet set for that payday, having put together the best season of his career after a wildly memorable playoff run, the NBA is facing an unforeseen set of circumstances that could radically alter the nature of the offseason. In the summer of 2016, the opposite scenario presented itself. With the new American national television deal kicking in, resulting in a windfall for the owners and players alike, there was a huge bump in BRI in 2015-16 compared to 2014-15. The NBA proposed “cap smoothing” options that would have spread that money over several seasons instead of having the whole thing apply that offseason. Those proposals would have prevented that class of free agents disproportionately benefitting from a massive “cap spike.” The Players’ Association declined those suggestions from the NBA, and Bismack Biyombo and Ian Mahinmi are still reaping the benefits.
 
This summer could present a gigantic “cap dip,” with 2020’s free agents bearing the brunt of what should be a massive drop in BRI. Accordingly, it might make sense for VanVleet to make yet another bet on himself, accepting a shorter contract in the cash-strapped year and re-entering the market in 2021 when there figures to be more money to go around, even if there will be more talented players available. VanVleet making that decision could greatly benefit the Raptors, who have been trying to preserve as much room as possible for 2021, the Summer of Giannis. An expensive one-year deal for 2020-21, like the extension the Raptors gave Lowry in the preseason, does more to maintain flexibility than a multi-year deal would. Thus, VanVleet was accusing me of amateur espionage.
 
“Everything’s on the table,” VanVleet said when presented with the hypothetical scenario. “I’m in a position where I feel like I’ve done my work and proven my worth. We’re going to position ourselves the right way, but also we’re kind of waiting to see what’s offered. We have to wait to see what’s offered. We can create the deal, obviously. But nobody knows what anything’s going to look like. (A one-year deal) hasn’t been on the table for discussion really between me and my camp. It’s more like, let’s wait and see what happens. Whenever it’s time to move, then we sit down and negotiate.
 
“I just did a two-year (contract). Best-case scenario, no, I wouldn’t take a short-term deal. But obviously this is not a best-case scenario for anybody. I’ll just say I’m flexible. I’m open. I’ll listen. I think everybody knows what a best-case scenario looks like. We’ll start there and work our way down.”
 
VanVleet knows this is the only thing he can say, as none of this is in his control. Every last bit of potential BRI would help VanVleet, and he would be anxious to play even if he were not a pending free agent. Despite that, VanVleet said he is skeptical that the NBA will find a way to conclude the season unless the NBA is willing to really delay the conclusion to the season.
 
“If we’re saying the timeline matters, “ VanVleet said, “(if) we’re saying all these … things and you’re looking around the world at what’s going on with the virus itself, if our league is going to be a leader in terms of public health and public safety and player safety, (if) you gotta follow the guidelines of what the virus is speaking to you … the odds are probably against us in terms of that.”
 
At the same time, he knows what might drive the league to finish its season in whatever manner it can.
 
“But money, right?”
 
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Acie
Is it just me or am I sensing shades of  a less self-aggrandizing Mike James? lol
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LX
Acie wrote:
Is it just me or am I sensing shades of  a less self-aggrandizing Mike James? lol


this seems like the opposite of Mike James to me

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I just think that it sucks when you do start to think about what woulda happened, shoulda happened, so try to stay away from that (type of thinking) as much as possible
MJ did not try to stay away from that kind of thinking - he doubled down on it while talking in the third person. I don’t see anything unreasonable there - he says he knows what he wants under the best case scenario but also recognizes that best case scenario has been severely hampered.
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Acie
I suppose.

I took the quote to mean he's not going to cash out as much as he'd hoped due to play being suspended, so he's trying not to think about it.

Accusing Koreen of working for Masai (perhaps it was tongue and cheek), no talk about winning or continuity or loyalty to the organization that's invested so much in him...just seems weird to me.
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LX
I just think he is very much like Kyle. The cheekiness towards Koreen were probably deflections from the discussion in general. And the discussion Koreen directed him towards does not really involve winning or continuity or loyalty, and if he had injected them into the discussion it would have smelled like the kind of bullshit you never hear from guys like him and Kyle. I guess there is an element of Mike James with that as well, but man Mike James went over the top with the idea of his value, whereas Fred and Kyle are very grounded in reality and recognize that they need to fight against certain perceptions to move forward without falling prey to not seeing the work that they need to do to make that fight successful.
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moremilk
the last time there was a major cap change, the league and the players couldn't agree on a sensible solution, and that led to a string of horrible contracts (including caroll with us, if I'm not mistaken).

This time, it would be hugely favourable for us if they still can't agree. A major dip this season followed by a massive increase the next would be the absolute best case scenario for us. Not only we could lock siakam and fred at lower rates that would become relative bargains in 2-3 seasons, but the guys we plan to sign in 2021 (beyond the max free agent slot) are not projected to be max players, so the cap matters much less.

Given the modest free agency market this season, I'm not sure they will be any big urgency to strike out a cap leveling deal - and that's not even accounting for the fact that most of the energy will be spent deciding on how to finish the season, handle the draft and free agency and next season's schedule. Only a few teams have an incentive to level the cap (the big spenders primarly, the others stand to gain from the low cap as they'll get more luxury revenues. For most players it makes no difference either, only free agents and extensions that kick in this year would be affected.

So it's fairly likely that they will leave things as they are, a lower cap this season, possibly lower than last season, and a big recovery the following year.

On the bright side, after all the hand-wringing about the decline in interest in the nba earlier this season, after this hiatus, chances are that's not going to come up for a while once things come to normal. The interest in live sports will be massive, although there will be so much competition for eye-balls, with possibly all the leagues playing at the same time in september.
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Mo_fusion
It's one thing to be "back on TV" and the "social distancing restrictions to be lifted" but what people need to realize is so much rests on the 'best practices for socializing' that will surely be coming in one form or another - Public Health, WHO, both etc. Pro/college sports gatherings may not look the same. People may be weary to gather in groups of 15 to 50k+ themselves. Then again, things could go 'back to normal' relatively quickly...I just can't see how that would be likely.
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DocHolliday
Mo_fusion wrote:
It's one thing to be "back on TV" and the "social distancing restrictions to be lifted" but what people need to realize is so much rests on the 'best practices for socializing' that will surely be coming in one form or another - Public Health, WHO, both etc. Pro/college sports gatherings may not look the same. People may be weary to gather in groups of 15 to 50k+ themselves. Then again, things could go 'back to normal' relatively quickly...I just can't see how that would be likely.


The picture below is today in  California....even more packed in Florida (you can find pics at #floridamorons).  People don't care about Covid-19, they want to socialize and have things the way they were.  The general masses and their views on seniors/infirmed are being exposed for what they are.  They'll be more and more pressure that will mount on sports franchises to go back to the way business was conducted before.  People are currently being arrested as they protest the stay at home orders.  IMO, in order to assert "best practices for socializing", they will have to be subtly imposed on the masses to have any chance to affect change.  Concepts that I read are hands free with absolutely everything in the stadium, entering the facility and having your temperature scanned from a machine 10 feet away, sanitizers everywhere, etc, etc.


download.jpeg 
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moremilk
DocHolliday wrote:


The picture below is today in  California....even more packed in Florida (you can find pics at #floridamorons).  People don't care about Covid-19, they want to socialize and have things the way they were.  They'll be more and more pressure that will mount on sports franchises to go back to the way business was conducted before.  People are currently being arrested as they protest the stay at home orders.  IMO, in order to assert "best practices for socializing", they will have to be subtly imposed on the masses to have any chance to affect change.  Concepts that I read are hands free with absolutely everything in the stadium, entering the facility and having your temperature scanned from a machine 10 feet away, sanitizers everywhere, etc, etc.


download.jpeg 




stadiums of any kind will not be opening this year in almost any state/province/country, except a few misguided places. Those hand-free things you refer to either don't exist, or they're not reliable (apparently they 15 minute test they tried in the states has an error rate too high to be useful for things like this). A temperature check is just a rough screen for people who are already pretty sick, but the majority of infected people don't have any symptoms, it wouldn't do much to prevent spreading in a packed stadium.

Until there's a good, reliable and widely available vaccine, and a large proportion of the population takes it, sports will have to be played out without spectators imo. And that may not happen until mid next year. If that's the case, even with tv rights, the cap may collapse next summer, no spectactors means no merchandise sales, no concessions etc.

I hope I'm wrong, because in this scenario, there will be serious questions about the viability of certain franchises - especially if the owners draw their main revenue from industries that will continue to be negatively impacted. Certain teams also make a lot of money from non-sports events (concerts etc), and those will not be happening either.
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