By Todd Peterson
Though it’s already been said across the interwebs, I’ll reiterate: “Happy Christmas (
War Lockout is over).” Yes, good has triumphed over evil again this Christmas season. The Grinch’s heart has grown three sizes, Scrooge has seen his visions of Christmas past, present and future; or maybe it was Kramer learning of the Festivus for the Rest of Us. Regardless of which analogy is most fitting, the bottom line remains the same: Hunter and Stern apparently Tebow’d this thing and, pending the players and owners voting yea, we are back in business.
ESPN’s Larry Coon has your definitive primer on the new deal. We’re still digesting it along with our Thanksgiving turkey, but this should keep you satiated until the new CBA is officially finalized.
Now, before we go naming our children Hunter and Stern, and while we wait to unwrap our NBA season on Christmas morning, may I add a few words of pessimism to your stocking: With little-to-no training camp, a roster full of relatively new players, a new coach, and an overly burdensome schedule, the Jazz may not be looking at this season as a gift wrapped basket of joy like the rest of us.
Furthermore, it’s still unclear how this deal will impact the small/large market relationship. Some think the formation of so-called Super Teams will continue unchecked. Others think there are some important concessions to smaller market teams. Changes in revenue sharing, salary bands, contract length, and free-agent incentives are all discussed in Larry Coon’s article.
However, even my concerns over the new deal and the upcoming season cannot dampen my enthusiasm about the start of this strange 66-game ride. I look forward to seeing how Coach Corbin develops this group of veterans and youngsters, how Jefferson performs in his new 2.0 body, if Harris can win me over and make me a believer that he’s our man. And, of course, I am overly giddy about seeing the top draft picks perform in prime time.
So may we all join together in a chorus of “Buckle Up, Booner” and give thanks for the season of basketball that is upon us.
Follow Todd: @theToddam