In the last decade, the amount of financial terminology required to understand team building in modern professional sports has exploded.
Salary cap! Salary floor! Base salary! Bonus structure! Guaranteed money! Team options! Player options! Arbitration! Super2! Service time! Trade kicker! Trade exception! Sign and trade! Luxury tax! Repeat luxury tax offender penalties! Over slot draft pick compensation! International bonus pool! Restricted free agent! Unrestricted free agent! Bird rights! Compensatory picks! Max extension! Supermax extension! Dead money!
Enough is enough.
In my younger, more naive days, I thought introducing strict rules around what teams were allowed to spend on their players would create a level playing field and make it possible for teams with lower revenues to compete with richer organizations. In my old age, I now know that this is dumb.
When rich teams want to compete, they find a way to make it work. When poor teams want to compete, they don’t do it by spending. Most teams don’t care about competing at all and use their sport’s financial rules as an excuse to justify being cheap.
Take last year’s Mookie Betts trade. The Boston Red Sox moved one of the three best players in the league for purely financial reasons.
I am so tired of hearing how the smart teams don’t spend money. Look at the Yankees and Dodgers and tell me they’re not smart.
Ditch all these rules and let it play out. Let the rich teams spend and the poor teams shop in the bargain bin. That’s how it goes with all these rules in place, so why not make the whole experience easier to digest?
Down with the salary cap!