October 26, 2016 | 12:57 pm EDT Update
On a side note, Schroder is eligible for an extension ahead of the Oct. 31 deadline, and the two sides are talking, according to league sources. It’s hard for either to act when no one knows what the rules will be in the new collective bargaining deal.
One wrinkle in the current proposed deal, according to sources familiar with it: Cap holds attached to free agents coming off rookie contracts could jump to 250 and 300 percent of their prior salaries, up from 200 and 250 percent, to prevent teams from arranging wink-wink deals as San Antonio and Detroit did with Kawhi Leonard and Andre Drummond, respectively: “Hang in free agency as a cheapo cap hold, and we’ll sign everyone else first.” That extra few million matters for teams scrounging max cap space. As of now, cap holds attached to players with more experience would stay the same, per league sources. That could change, of course. But the status quo would be huge for Golden State, which is counting on Stephen Curry’s under-market cap hold — $18 million, way below his $30-million-plus max salary — to fit Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala, and Shaun Livingston.
LeBron James and the reigning NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers have to be respected. But to add one of the top three players in the league to a team that blew a 3-1 NBA Finals lead with two-time NBA MVP Stephen Curry and two other All-Stars in Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, not to mention 2015 Finals MVP Andre Iguodala, is gluttonous. A championship trophy should be expected. Immense pressure is warranted. Just hours before the Warriors’ season opener, one NBA scout strongly stated his adoration for Durant’s new club. “It’s a f—— joke,” the NBA scout said.
“The Warriors are too damn good. I saw them play four times. They are unbeatable. I saw one preseason game when Klay was off and KD and Steph just easily took over the slack. They’re just too good offensively. One of the best offensive teams we will ever see,” he said. Better than Magic Johnson and the “Showtime” Los Angeles Lakers? “Yes, better than ‘Showtime,’ ” the scout said. “They have more shooters than that Lakers team did.”
We spoke with J-Simms last week about his come up, his rookie season and what’s in store in year two. SLAM: You’re in the League now, but you played with the Sugar Land Legends of the American Basketball League. What was that experience like? Jonathon Simmons: It was a grind. I was playing basketball, so it was fun. All of the grind, it’s part of it. At that time, I really didn’t know what to expect. I was just doing it because it was there. It was fun, it was a grind. We traveled on a 12-passenger bus and our own cars to games. Those rides were always fun. I just took it for what it was. I tried to stay positive through the process because I really wasn’t sure where my life was going to go in basketball.
SLAM: You’ve translated that into a contract with the Spurs, one of the best organizations in sports. Was there anything that surprised you when you joined the squad? JS: I’m learning a lot over here, just how to be a professional. I still be like, ‘Yo, I’m in the League, I’m about to play such and such.’ And this is my second year, after I’ve been watching it for so long. Like, Pau Gasol, he’s cool as shit (laughs).