Wednesday, August 6, 2008

King James to Europe?

It doesn't sound right, but it just might happen. Lebron James is the latest name in talks of NBA players going to Europe. The difference is that he is one of the most prominent athletes in the game today. A defining icon of the NBA. James' contract with Cleveland runs through the 2010-2011 season, but he can choose to opt out the year before. But why would he want to leave the world's biggest basketball stage? Money. And money can make you a global icon. So how much is James asking for? No less than $50 million dollars. Per year. Ludicrous as it sounds, a deal like that for one of the best players in the world may not be too hard to come by. At least in Europe. Unlike the NBA, the European league does not have salary caps, and the euro is continuing to increase in value in comparison to our dollar. Despite these trends, Joel Litvin, the NBA's president of league and basketball operations, is confident that there will not be a need to remove the salary cap in order to compete with offers from Europe. Although James only plans to play abroad for a year or two before returning to the NBA, it's hard not to worry about what kind of precedence this could set. It's too early to know what kind of impact this trend could have on the NBA, but it doesn't look good. I guess only time will tell...

1 Comment:

Time Intact said...

$50 million is beyond insane to pay any player per year, but if a Euro team actually does it and LeBron considers it, it would probably be David Stern's worse nightmare after the whole betting scandal with Tim Donaghy.