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And Another Thing


Reversal of course?

Apparently someone has been hit with the good-sense stick.

This upon the news that the Chris Paul deal is apparently being revisited, a day after NBA commissioner David Stern, goaded by small-market owners who'd taken leave of their own senses, made the extraordinarily cotton-headed decision to nix a perfectly legitimate deal that would have actually benefited the small-market New Orleans Hornets.

At issue, apparently, was the fact that Paul was a superstar going to the Lakers, raising again the specter of LeBron-to-the-Heat. It utterly disregarded the additional fact that the Lakers were giving up their best inside player (Pau Gasol) and the league's top sixth man (Lamar Odom), plus a first-round-pick, plus three other potential starters.

In other words, it wasn't like the Lakers were getting Paul for nothing. And by nixing the deal, Stern virtually assured that would happen down the road, once Paul plays out this last year of his contract and heads for green pastures.

Cotton-headed. It calls into serious question the acumen of the NBA owners,which in makes another excellent point for those who claimed the owners forced the lockout because they couldn't handle their own business, and wanted the players to save them from themselves.

It also points out just how out of touch these guys are, because the clear implication behind nixing the Paul trade was the owners, or at least a lot of them, want to return to the days when you could limit player movement, which hasn't been possible since the advent of free agency. That in turn makes you wonder if the ultimate dream of the owners, or at least a lot of them, would be the outright abolitiion of free agency.

And that is a dream. After all, it's been 40 years since baseball's reserve clause was struck down by the courts. Don't think it's coming back anytime soon.

Ben Smith's blog.