Many are predicting this summer’s draft — occurring tomorrow night — as a franchise changing one with huge names such as Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, the injured Joel Embiid, Marcus Smart and other top players expected to go in the lottery and change whoever selects them.
As we know from recent NBA history — mainly the landmark 2003 Draft — isolated and stacked draft classes can change the entire scope of the NBA.
There has not been a draft as important and successful as that one — maybe excluding 2008 depending on the observer. But if any in the near-future is going to resemble it, this year’s just might be the one.
Once you put a possibly enormous draft with impending free agency for a bunch of top players, you are bound to get a lot of trade discussion involving high picks and superstars.
At this time of the year, when stars’ contracts are up, it is almost more surprising when they do not opt out than when they do, as opting out gives them more flexibility to restructure a contract or sign elsewhere if that is their prerogative.
Then there are the trade discussions, that insiders always seem to claim are “imminent” in nature when, most of the time, they turn out to be nothing more than clickbait on their respective websites. Already, Jarrett Jack has been rumored to almost go to both the Nets and the Jazz.
Want to know what team he is currently on? The Cavaliers, with whom he ended the 2013-14 season.
Kevin Love, who has been rumored to be on the way out of Minnesota for what seems like years at this point, almost went to the Warriors in a blockbuster deal a few days ago that would have created a very desirable destination for LeBron.
Nearly as soon as the intensity of the possible trade heated up, talks between the Timberwolves and Golden State were pronounced dead, and Minnesota is back at square one in dealing with its star forward/center. Maybe they will rise from the dead sometime soon.
Obviously, it is very early in the offseason and the draft has not even happened yet, which explains the lack of moves. But if you were just following the many reporters and writers who cover the NBA, you would have thought that a flurry of big transactions would have already taken place.
Who knows, the rest of the summer could prove what I am saying wrong, but it is possible that with a lot of huge (in terms of money and talent) contracts to be moved around, many end up staying where they originally were.
I mean, would anyone really be surprised if LeBron stayed in Miami, Melo in New York, and Love in Minneapolis, among other stars? Probably not, regardless of what many are saying at this point in the process.