Saturday Notebook: Lookout Lockout! Faux Free Agents! Coming Attractions!
Posted by Brendan Jackson on Jul 9, 2011
It took us a week, but we here at CelticsHub finally realized that the Lockout does not apply to us. Our lawyers pored over document after document and finally informed us that we are not officially employed by the NBA.
Hayes took it pretty hard. He was convinced he was a reserve power forward for the Clippers. The lawyers explained as gently as they could that 6’2″ power forwards only exist in rec league and JV basketball. He’s still recovering…
It may have cost us a pretty penny, but when you think your blogging career may be in jeopardy if you post, you have to take every special precaution you can. So we’re back and to kick off our return, here’s a notebook roundup of the latest Celtics and NBA-related happenings.
I hate the NBA lockout. Seriously, it’s the worst. Not only is there nothing major to report/comment on, everything that is reported is meaningless speculation or otherwise not really worth discussing. It pains me to have to regurgitate meaningless speculation for debate but when the only actual news are lockout status updates signaling that nothing substantial has happened, you gotta do what you gotta do.Why is everything meaningless speculation? Because not having a Collective Bargaining Agreement means there are no universal rules to abide by when analyzing and debating. Without rules, no one can effectively argue anything. It’s why I hate Harry Potter (sorry Potter fans, I still like you. In fact, some of my best friends have the Deathly Hallows tattooed on them). The characters get put in these impossible situations and in order to get out, a new made up spell or potion or elixir is introduced to save the day. The point is, if the rules keep changing all the time, what’s the point of emotionally investing yourself in any one situation. You start questioning why some characters die and why some characters live.
Me: Hey J.K., why didn’t you make up some magical spell to save [spoiler protected] like you did to save [spoiler protected]?
J.K.: Because I do what I want! (blows nose with a 100 Euro note).
And that, my friends, ends my Harry Potter rant. So where was I going with this? Oh right, we need rules so we can make reasonable speculations. Like, for example, in the case of free agents. There is a good possibility that the Mid-Level exception will not survive in the new CBA. This means almost every free agent in Gary Dzen’s (Boston Globe) photo essay is priced out of the running. Same goes for Chris Forsberg’s (ESPN Boston) Chuck Hayes and DeAndre Jordan hopes.
Another terrible part of the lockout is that unless you’re involved in the negotiations, have a degree in business/accounting, or have an “Esq.” next to your name, you don’t really know what’s going on. Luckily, Bill Simmons (ESPN/Grantland) has a reasonable understanding of the NBA’s problems and has provided a nice little breakdown coupled with some solutions.
I like Simmons for a couple of reasons. He’s pretty funny, he’s clear, and he’s a Boston fan. The important thing about topics like the lockout, is clarity. You can read the linked article and say, “I get that”. The one thing I don’t get is all the references to the movie Dave. After a quick trip to IMDB, I discovered that Dave was a delightful romantic comedy that came out in 1993. Back then, I was far more concerned with watching Fulton Reed mess up some Hawks than political comedies but perhaps that is my short-coming.
A little while ago, Tim Donahue of the Pacers TrueHoop blog gave another interesting proposal to end the lockout. Definitely worth a read if you like business-y stuff.
In other news, Yao Ming retired the other day. This is super sad. Yao was the first super tall guy that actually lived up to expectations before injuries began plaguing him every season. He’ll be remembered for growing the NBA fan base in China, his feathery touch, his all-around good guy-ness, and his no jump dunks. For the Celtics, Yao’s departure from the league is both sad and a potential blessing in disguise. Yao would have been a veteran minimum candidate for a lot of contenders. If the Celtics had been able to snag him, the hopes would be high and likelihood that he would wind up being another O’Neal brother fiasco would be even higher. The psyche of Celtics’ fans survive to be crushed another day!
Thursday marked the one-year anniversary of LeBron James’ epic career shifting. The TrueHoopers took on a few questions about “The Decision” in a 5-on-5 Roundtable for ESPN. You can check out all our responses in the link above, but here’s a little preview in case you’re sick of clicking:
The Celtics roster could get worse before it get better. According to the Boston Herald, both Celtics draftees JuJuan Johnson and E’twaun Moore are exploring their options overseas. Here’s Mark Murphy reporting:
“It’s all over the board right now, but some Euroleague teams we’ve talked to are interested,” said Mark Bartlestein, who represents Moore. “It’s a day-to-day thing. We really don’t know yet.”
It makes sense to these agents, though.
Bill Duffy, whose agency represents Johnson, said last week that he is looking into the international option for all of his young players, who may have a unique appeal to foreign teams.
Though upper tier leagues like the Euroleague may not have the ability to pay most of the NBA free agents looking for their next contract, minimum-level young players may be another matter.
“It may work out better for rookies,” said Bartlestein. “There may be more opportunities for young players like that, but we’ll see.
“E’Twaun certainly could end up overseas, and we’re talking to teams. If we find the perfect opportunity for him, then maybe we will make that move.”
Should Moore or Johnson sign, it’s unlikely that the deal would allow either player to return to the Celtics once the lockout ends.
“It’s hard to say about that,” said Bartlestein, “but my guess is that most of these deals will be for the entire season, without any kind of provision for leaving sooner.”
With the news of Deron Williams and Gilbert Brown entertaining offers to play abroad with opt out clauses should the NBA season resume, it appears you need to be either be really good or really bad to play overseas and in the NBA next season.
Not having rookies around next season would also suck. The Celtics need young, athletic players to mop up some minutes when/if the Celtics starting having to play back-to-backs or back-to-back-to-backs (I just thought of something. If the season is shortened and teams will have to play three games in three nights, the SEGABABA convention is about to get weirder. I see SEGABABABAs and THIGABABABAs in our future).
The Herald is also reporting that the Red Claws are adding the 76ers an an affiliate. For down Maine basketball fans, this is awesome news. You’re going to get a chance to watch Craig Brackins and Lavoy Allen not live up to their potential! Horray!
There is plenty more to discuss but I’m already over a thousand words. Let’s end here with a little CelticsHub newsletter of sorts.
- Starting Monday, the CelticsHub staff will start debating the top misconceptions of the Celtics season. If you like strong opinions based off of questionably-interpreted advanced stats you are going to get your money’s worth!
- Be sure to look here an aggregate of periodic Lockout-related links. Everything you need to know should be linked here accompanied by an appropriate level of snark.
- Video! The season may not start on time so it’s important we relive last season as much as possible. We will do everything in our power to do that for you.