“Free agents will get squeezed,” a general manager said. “What I see all the time is players not understanding why, ‘This player got this, but I get that?’ They want it to make sense and it just doesn’t make sense. I think you’ll see a lot of agents get fired. “The top guys will always feed first and then the year of the cap spike, there was a lot left for everybody else to feed. Next year, the top players will still get theirs, and then there will be not much left.”
Josh Robbins: Wesley Iwundu’s 3-year, $4.1 million deal with the Magic includes a team option for the 3rd year, WI’s agent, Austin Walton, said. The deal isn’t fully finalized. But that is the agreement in place.
“The lack of smoothing has made it quite a bit challenging this summer,” prominent agent Bill Duffy said last week. “This, in addition to the decline in revenue distributed into the marketplace this summer has resulted in a significant and unanticipated stagnant free agent market. There are also quite a few teams that have chosen to not aggressively participate in the free agent market.” Indeed, teams like Atlanta and Indiana, while adding players, have done so very prudently, not looking to spend large amounts of money in rebuilding situations. Other teams like Detroit, Milwaukee and New Orleans, that were close to exceeding the tax threshold and paying luxury tax next year, have been very judicious in their moves to stay below the threshold.
“I don’t think they should have smoothed it,” prominent agent Mark Bartelstein said Friday. “It’s easy in hindsight to say that. But I think anytime you’re doing something artificially, I don’t think that’s a good thing. You can open up a hornets’ nest. The idea was the cap should track the revenues, and that’s what the union did. Would it have made things a little more consistent? I wouldn’t have been a fan of smoothing because you’d be doing something artificial. And when you use that word you can have unintended consequences.”
New revenues from sales of advertising patches on the front of team uniforms will come on line in 2017-18; nine teams — Boston, Brooklyn, Cleveland, Minnesota, Orlando, Philadelphia, Sacramento, Toronto and Utah — already have sponsorship patch deals. Detroit’s new downtown arena, Little Caesar’s Arena, will also open next season. “The cap didn’t come in where it was projected,” Bartelstein said. “If the cap would have been at 108 this year, we would have been completely fine without the smoothing. The cap came in at 99. That’s a huge difference. Next year it may go the opposite way — the cap may be $4 or $5 million beyond what is expected. And we’ll get a bounce the other way.”