Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob was fined $50,000 for tampering after implying that his team could be interested in making a trade for disgruntled Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons.
“The NBA announced today that it has fined Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob $50,000 for violating the league’s anti-tampering rule.
“The fine is in response to comments by Lacob in a September 21 news article regarding the Philadelphia 76ers Ben Simmons,” said the NBA’s release.
Joe Lacob has seemingly shut the door on any Ben Simmons trade negotiations 👀 pic.twitter.com/N1Zne8qkme
— ClutchPoints NBA (@ClutchPointsNBA) September 22, 2021
Simmons has made it very clear he won’t report to training camp or play another game in a 76ers uniform.
Philly executives have made it clear that they don’t really want him back, regardless of what head coach Doc Rivers says as a form of damage control.
DOC RIVERS on BEN SIMMONS: “We would love to get Ben back. And if we can, we're going to try to do that. Ben has a long contract. It’s in our hands and we want him back.”
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) September 22, 2021
The NBA’s tampering rules are outdated and borderline naive. In today’s era, all superstars talk to each other and try to position themselves to join forces and form super teams.
LeBron James has become a master of this style of recruiting, but he’s a player so he is protected to a certain extent. Executives all engage in some form of tampering, and it happens right under the nose of the commissioner.
So what are we really doing here when a fine is levied for what the league deems tampering? If we really wanna get technical, it happens every time free agency rolls around or when a player becomes unhappy and wants out of their current situation.
Some instances are definitely more blatant and outlandish than others. There are levels to this, but every now and then an executive (or player) becomes too transparent and downright obvious with his words.
Like when the Lakers and Anthony Davis let everyone know he was leaving the Pelicans by hook or crook. People felt that LeBron and agent Rich Paul overstepped their boundaries in maneuvering AD to L.A.
Magic Johnson Is The Tampering King
Magic Johnson got fined for tampering three times in a 12-month span when he was running the Lakers front office. Johnson was discussing the skills of Milwaukee star Giannis Antetokounmpo and said the Greek native would put the Bucks “on the map” and bring them an NBA title.
The team was fined $500,000 a few years prior to that when the league found general manager Rob Pelinka had been communicating with Paul George’s agent while George was with the Indiana Pacers. The NBA had already issued a warning to the team after Johnson winked at George during a television interview.
Magic was showing his desperation at the time.
Lacob Wants The Dynasty Days Back…Right Now
Looks like that’s what happened with Lacob, who in a recent interview implied that his Warriors could be interested in trading for the All-Star.
In the interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, Lacob said this:
“I think we’re always looking for ways to improve our team. We would always look.”
“In some ways, it doesn’t really fit what we’re doing. He makes a lot of money. And can he finish games? I don’t know. “He’s very talented, the problem is we have Draymond.”
Simmons For Draymond Swap?
Ben Simmons and Draymond Green are similar types of players. Neither All-Star can really shoot, but they know how to help facilitate an offense. The other problem is salary structure.
It didn’t take a brain surgeon to know Lacob would be fined after these comments, and the league took roughly 48 hours to do so. So it’s safe to say they deemed this blatant tampering
One has to wonder. Does this officially kill any chance of Simmons landing with the Dubs? With the season quickly approaching, we will find out Ben Simmons’ fate very soon.