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Agent Provocateur

Agents have always had their influence in the NBA but is this Anthony Davis / Rich Paul / Klutch Sports at another level, Enjoy.

I have to start by saying that NBA Franchises historically have held all the cards and can draft, waive, sign, trade players to their hearts content, and they have made some inconceivably bad decisions in all of these categories.

For example in recent history Cleveland drafted Anthony Bennett, Memphis signed Chandler Parsons to a 4 year $94,438,523 contract ending in 2020 and of course the Brooklyn trade to acquire the ageing Pierce and KG from Boston for their decade worth of future picks (the 10’s weren’t good for the Nets). In their defense these look worse as time goes by, and were all done within the CBA rules.

Like all football players some teams are smarter than others (shout out Barry Hall), but that is usually a internal mindset can be overcome with personal changes or the selling of a team (Donald Sterling).

Now for the players side. In this instance Anthony Davis asking for a trade out of the Pelicans is reasonably fair. He has played hard for 7 years in a New Orleans jersey, he deserves to have a choice not to sign his next contract with them.

This is where it gets murky, Anthony Davis changes agents and signs with Rich Paul of Klutch sports at seasons start. Rich Paul represents Ben Simmons, John Wall and LeBron James and others. Rich is also a high school bestie of one LeBron James. Anthony Davis says through his agent two weeks before the trade deadline that he is not signing his next contract. which resulted in being fined by the NBA $50 000. The timing is the key here.

The Lakers (LeBron’s team) are the frontrunners for a trade at this time. Boston are excluded due to the “rose rule” (can’t trade for two max players), and all other teams are either waiting for the draft lottery or don’t have the players/picks or like Golden State don’t have the room. Without putting on my tin foil hat everyone from Magic (Lakers president), Rob Pelinka (Lakers GM), LeBron (newly signed Laker), Rich Paul (LeBron’s Agent/Friend AD’s Agent) and AD knew this to be the case.

Collusion anyone? (buzz word at the moment)

Anthony Davis Sr has also come out to say he doesn’t want his son to play for Danny Ainge and the Celtics because of Isiash Thomas trade due to loyalty. Didn’t Cleveland trade him away before there finals run? (Cavs = LeBron’s team). Not saying that trades aren’t at times ugly but players are getting paid and teams (up the top) want to win and GM’s have a job to do. Unfortunately the business side gets in the way sometimes. Anthony Davis Sr wants his son to go where AD has chosen. I get it but all these things add up to bullying small market teams.

Anthony Davis Sr is also saying this because he can’t get fined and AD / Rich Paul want the message to get out to discourage other teams which in turn gives, (in theory) the Lakers more power with trade negotiations with New Orleans (bullying). I think AD / Rich should just come out with it and stop hiding behind family members and let the NBA decide the extent of tampering.

Anthony Davis is not doing the Pelicans any favours by letting them know in advance of his contract negotiations, because he is in year 3 of a 5 year deal. He could have told them in the off-season so they could get a competitive offer from all teams. Yes, cards on the table I am a Celtic fan but purely from a New Orleans point of view this isn’t only losing a player, it seems like they are being bullied into where they are losing him to. For their sake I hope they hold firm. If that means not playing AD for the rest of the season, so be it. That is on the player and agent, the players request/timing was designed with the Lakers in mind and this manipulation has to be looked at.

The last time there was this amount of successful players only (baby) collusion was with the Miami Heat 2010. Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh and oh look LeBron James. This wasn’t against the rules because no way to mute player conversations but a pretty cheap way to “earn” championships. I love the way LeBron plays and he is a great man off the court and his shoes are cool but, if he can’t see how his career is tarnished since the first go around with Cleveland with these sort of things and coaching changes requests (Luke Walton is in the hot seat) then he must be a occupational Stevie Wonder!

He is too good to worry about all these backdoor machinations. Come on King.

Rich Paul / Anthony Davis has also leaked where AD will sign with long term. Lakers (surprised, not), Clippers, Knicks and Bucks.

Low and behold the Lakers are really the only team with assets at the moment out of those 4 teams. Clippers don’t have enough young guys, Knicks don’t know where their pick (2019) will fall yet and the Bucks second best player wouldn’t interest the Pelicans.

So really this is just marketing spin by Rich Paul to say see we are flexible, it isn’t just the Lakers we are interested in, I call Bulldust Rich.

The Warriors are a problem but it really didn’t have this much manipulation player/agent wise. The original Warriors were compiled through the draft, great picks smart moves, it was only on the arrival of (free agent) Durant. The cap went up by too much all at once (at players request last CBA) and with Curry’s bargain contract which gave them enough money to sign KD.

a) this should not have happened and

b) KD how about being a bit more competitive buddy.

I am so glad Hakeem didn’t join the 1996 Bulls.

Agents should do the best for their client sure, that is their job but let’s stop trying to skirt the CBA rules. This reminds me of the old mafia days, heavies wanting everyone to pay protection money or else. Maybe not that bad but not particularly above board either. If this isn’t a power play by some NBA heavy hitters Pelinka (ex agent) and Rich Paul to force Anthony Davis in one direction only then, I’ll eat my hat!

Adam Silver must look at the rules for the NBA’s competitive sake.

Finishing off, New Orleans aren’t the best decision makers and AD wants out (can’t see a future) I get it.

No matter how incompetent New Orleans are I hope they stay strong and look after themselves now, Rich Paul / AD have made there move now the balls are in your court Pelicans ( = crap name).

Always fighting for competitive balance, do not want a EPL model for the NBA. I want all teams to have a chance at a title if they do the smart moves.

Down with dirty “Agent” Tricksters

Signing out


Journalist for the Possingham enquirer

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