Training Camps Could Get Pushed Back
Now from the terrible idea department.
Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski reports the league is pondering pushing back the start of training camps.
The league office was polling team executives over the past 48 hours about the possibility, sources said. Despite the discussions, no final decision has been made. Friday is the first day that teams are allowed to sign free agents and make trades. Training camps, scheduled to start the same day, could be pre-empted to allow teams to assemble fuller and more complete rosters.
This idea makes sense only for teams like the Nuggets, who have just a handful of players under contract and desperately need time to fill out their rosters. But what about the majority of the league’s other 29 teams, the clubs that have set rosters or almost adequate rosters? The league would only be penalizing those teams by taking away three days of training camp. That would be a tremendous blow in a compressed preseason schedule that already offers only nine days to prepare for the first preseason game; seven days for some teams. Pushing back camp would mean the Thunder would have only six days to prepare for its preseason opener at Dallas.
I doubt this happens. But if it does, which can’t be ruled out considering those “B-list” collective bargaining agreement issues still haven’t been ironed out, you might as well chalk it up as another loss for the Thunder. For a lockout that supposedly was orchestrated to protect the small market franchise, it seems to be making the little guy its punching bag. All the Thunder has done is try to operate the right way, the responsible way, and yet most everything that comes out of this new deal seems to be pimp-slapping the Thunder. There is the amnesty clause, which the Thunder has no need for but will watch serve as a get-out-of-jail-free card for its biggest competitors. There is the max salary bump Kevin Durant is eligible for now, and Russell Westbrook is likely to qualify for this season, which will make it harder for the Thunder to retain its core in the long term and potentially add tension between Durant and Westbrook in the short. There is the two-year window higher spending teams have to keep spending before the more punitive luxury tax kicks in, which only makes it harder to keep up with the Lakers, er, Jones’. And now there’s the possibility of the Thunder, perhaps the league’s most stable team, losing precious time to prepare for a potential championship run.
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