How To Fix The NBA, G-League And College Basketball

The NBA faces two major problems these days, tanking and superstar players resting. We are getting to that time of year where these two problems will become more commonplace. NBA executives will meet during the All-Star break and plan out the final third of the regular season. While tanking and resting make sense for teams, it doesn’t make sense for the fans. Adam Silver clearly sees there’s a problem which is why he changed the lottery rules. He also said he will address players resting over the summer. Don’t worry Adam I have already done all the hard work for you. My fix to the NBA will trickle down and help the G-League and college basketball as well. While there are multiple aspects to my fix, it all starts with one major change, player salaries are tied to team wins. Let me explain how this would all work.

The Basics
Every NBA player will be guaranteed a 500,000 salary. We don’t want these guys going hungry after all. Each game a team wins they will get 2.4 million added to their team salary pool. The math at the end of the year will be very simple. Your salary pool will be the number of games you won x 2.4 million. Each team would get bonuses of 7.5 million for each playoff series win and 10 million to the champs.

How do we decided how its shared? There are no more player contracts based on dollars they are all based on percentages. If LeBron wants to sign with a team he can demand 4 years and 50% of the salary pool. If you are a free agent, are you going to sign at 40% of the Mavs or 4% of the Warriors? You better break out your projection guide and calculator! There is no salary cap other than a team simply has to dole out 100%* of their salary pool. This eliminates the luxury tax and all the salary cap manipulation that goes on, which I consider a problem but I digress.

*edit – Most readers complained about how hard it would be to trade players. I am implementing that each team must only use 95% of their pool to start the season to have in season flexibility. Just as in the current NBA trades must somewhat match already. Let’s be honest most in season trades are just salary dumps by tanking teams anyways. With this no tanking fix there wouldn’t be as many trades.

This sounds simple enough right. Players won’t want to rest or tank because it will mean less money for them. I thought about some problems that could arise from this setup. The biggest one being that NBA execs would still tank but instead of it being for a draft pick, it would be to save money. While I think it would be funny if a good player really wanted in a game and his coach sat him and tried to fight him, violence is not the answer. What if a team says a player is hurt to try and tank, but the player says they aren’t. Glad you asked. Each game will have an independent competition judge that will decide if a player can play 2 hours before each game.

I had to come up with a way to discourage owners from tanking. That answer is RELEGATION. The relegation would not be automatic as in European soccer. My system would be that the NBA teams with the 2 worst records had to play the G-League finalists to secure their spot for the next season. You can see how this will help the G-League but more on that later.

My other major change would be to the NBA Draft. I first saw this idea mentioned by Bomani Jones. There will be no more NBA Draft. The only rule is that every team must sign at least one eligible rookie to a 1%/1 year deal. That is similar to that all 1st round picks are guaranteed a roster spot now. Every eligible rookie is free to sign with whichever team they want. The entire idea that a person is forced to go work somewhere against their will seems kind of antiquated in the first place. That is not the reason for this change. This change is meant to help college basketball which I detail below.

For those of you that love watching the draft and the lottery don’t fret. You won’t have to worry about the lottery being rigged anymore. It’s every team for themselves like it should be. There will still be draft night and it will be awesome. Every team will come up to the podium and announce who they signed and for how much. This will just be one more battle between Woj and Shams to break the deals before draft night.

How This Will Fix College Basketball
First thing I would do is get rid of the 1 and done. That rule is worse than the forcing someone to go play somewhere they didn’t choose because in this case they aren’t getting paid. If you follow this site you know that I advocate every 5 star basketball recruit going overseas and getting paid instead of spending one year in college. I am a huge college basketball fan but I am also a reasonable person.

So how does the draft rule change help college basketball? To answer that I had to think about how I think the salary change would affect teams. Right now teams draft players based on potential and pay them to develop. If winning mattered then this would be less likely. NBA teams would want a more polished product. In the same regard by making rookie deals only 1 year deals college players would want to be more polished to make sure they stick. Would teams give long term deals to the super elite guys? Sure. But those guys that are nowhere near ready to play in the NBA would be taking a big risk by leaving after their freshman and sophomore years. Guys staying in school to get better will help college basketball. Yes some superstars will skip college all together but all in all this is a net positive.

Don’t worry to all the college basketball players out there this is not all bad for you. We are also instituting paying college players. The catch is that boosters will be paying you and it will be all on above board. That’s right everyone will know how much you got paid to go to a school and you will have to pay taxes on it. Signing Day will be not only putting on the hat, but announcing how rich you now are. This is how it should be done anyways in all college sports now. Deciding who gets paid what in college would be too hard but this would take care of that. You get paid your worth like it should be. I know some will complain that this will make all the big rich schools get all the best players. If this summer taught the naive people anything, it’s that it’s been happening for years. This new rule is just going to free up the FBI to deal with more important stuff.

By the way I will be monetizing my new rule by coming out with Prep Force College Escrow services. All boosters will be required to put in 4 years worth of pay that will be given to the players each year they are on the team. If they transfer the money is returned to the booster.

How This Will Fix The G-League
Right now very few people care about the G-League. 95% of you reading this couldn’t name who won the title last year without looking it up. There are some really good players in the G-League that just haven’t or won’t get their shot for one reason or another. The games are not the best quality because winning doesn’t really matter. Every player is just trying to showcase their talent to hopefully get the call up. This usually results in a lot of offense and much less defense. Yes even less defense than the actual NBA. Imagine how hard they would play knowing that instead of having to leave their fate in some exec’s hand they could win their way into the league.

Attendance and viewing of the games is very small, but what if the games mattered. Imagine if fans in Austin or Grand Rapids thought they actually had a chance for their team to make the NBA. Ideally all the G-League teams that are in current NBA cities would move to other cities that still had a 10,000+ seat arena to play at in case they made the NBA. Imagine the viewing and suspense of watching that best of 5 relegation series between Atlanta and Austin. Sign me up for it right now!

You Are All Welcome!
So there you have it. I just fixed basketball. It wasn’t that hard. I actually thought about the pay per win while having a discussion at the gym with a buddy yesterday. He said it was a good idea but there had to be some problems that he couldn’t think of. I slept on it and came up with the potential pitfalls and solved them. That’s right I completely fixed basketball in less than 24 hours!

I know there is a better chance of Lebron and IT reuniting in the offseason than this happening, but I think fans would love it. If you can think of more problems with the new system let me know in the comments. As the new King of the basketball world I will do my best to solve them as my duty to all basketball fans.

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