NBA and players agree to new collective bargaining agreement

According to a series of Tweets from NBA insiders Shams Charania and Adrian Wojnarowski, the NBA and the NBA Players Association have reached an agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement that will extend for the next seven years.

The new CBA includes some pretty significant changes to the previous labor agreement, both in terms of behind-the-scenes salary cap and trade rules to more visible changes to how the league is run. Some of the highlights include:

  • Increased penalties for teams that go well into the tax–namely a second tax apron that if exceeded would prevent a team from:
    • Using the taxpayer midlevel exception to sign a player
    • Sending cash out in trades
    • Trading first round picks 7 years out
    • Signing players in the buyout market
  • Maximum season over season raised have been increased from 120% to 140%
  • A minimum of 65 games played to be eligible for end of season awards
  • Marijuana use is no longer prohibited
  • An in-season tournament with a $500,000 per player prize. All games except the final will count towards regular season records as well. It will consist of regular season games pre-determined as ‘pool play’ games with the top eight teams advancing to a single elimination tournament in December.

The bullet points in the first list item are probably the most interesting for a team like the Hornets. The increased restrictions on tax teams make it much harder for big spenders to essentially ignore any salary rules to build stacked rosters come playoff times. Now veteran players that were traditionally hoarded by championship contenders will be more attainable for mid-tier playoff teams. Plus teams might be a little dissuaded to go way into the luxury tax to retain players knowing it significantly limits their ability to improve the margins of the roster.

And perhaps the best part of all of this is that it means another several years without having to worry about a lockout or strike.