This summer was a big summer in NBA free agency. It was big because of the big names that were free agents. I have no problem with the big names like LeBron James, Amar'e Stoudamire and D Wade getting big contracts, but why are more people getting paid big contracts that haven't even earned it.
Guys like Amir Johnson and Travis Outlaw are products of a watered-down talent base getting overpaid. Amir Johnson has basically done nothing in the league. He averaged 6.2 points and 4.8 rebounds for the Toronto Raptors last year, yet the Toronto Raptors pay $34 million over 5 years to retain his services? I don't understand this. He is only averaging 4.7 points and 2.3 rebounds this season. Travis Outlaw split time with the Blazers and the Clippers last year and got a 5 year/ $35 million deal from the New Jersey Nets. He averaged only 9.3 points and 3.6 rebounds last year and he gets $7 million a year? Is he really worth that much?
I don't fault the players as much as I fault the owners. The owners claim that they are losing revenue and they would like to reduce players' salaries. I don't believe them because if they really believed that, then they would not be paying these huge contracts to guys that weren't even the 3rd best players on their respective teams.
With the impending lockout coming, the owners need to get a better argument as to why they want to change the structure that has worked so well for them before. If they don't change the argument, then how they can explain all the huge contract extensions and signings of Kyle Lowry, Mike Conley Jr. and Wesley Matthews?