Five years, $120 million dollars.

Five years, $128 million dollars.

Five years, $130 million dollars.

Five years, $146 million dollars

Five years, $153 million dollars.

That is what Nick Batum of the Charlotte Hornets, Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards, Andre Drummond of the Detroit Pistons, DeMar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors, and Mike Conley of the Memphis Grizzlies got paid in the last week. Those were the highest paid contracts because of the NBA free agency. Out of the total $677 million dollars spent on those five players, only DeRozan and Drummond have been in an All-Star game (2016). So what in all that is green on earth, are teams paying for now?

First, I applaud anyone that can make money doing something that they love to do and have worked hard for. If a team or company is willing to pay you above market value for less than market ability, more power to the player. However, it has to come to a point in time that the owners and general managers will start to question their return on investments. They will begin to ask, am I getting more “bang for the buck”. Right now, that is answer is *expletive* NO.  This last week has players overseas, players retired for 10 years or more, all lacing up the high tops to see if they can get a piece of the pie. I can’t blame them for the amount of money that is being thrown around.

The NBA by means of the Collecting Bargaining Agreement (CBA) has allowed more revenue shares to be awarded to the players through each team. This is the second reason why there is an increase in money being spent on players this season. An estimated $24 million dollars more is allotted to each team to spend on players. This would help smaller market teams like the Sacramento Kings, Milwaukee Bucks, and the Grizzlies. But it somewhat backfires because now the New York Knicks, Boston Celtics, and Golden State Warriors have more money to sign All-stars. That is exactly what the Warriors did. They already have three, yes three All-Stars on the team in Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green. Now they have added the 2014 NBA MVP Kevin Durant. The rich keep getting richer it seems.

A lot of people are upset at Durant for leaving the Oklahoma City Thunder because they were only one game away from going to the NBA Finals for the second time in the franchise history. Some are upset because he went to the Warriors, of all places. Guess he felt, if you can’t beat them, join them. Either way, fans have to remember there is no loyalty in the sporting BUSINESS. Teams will trade you away if they feel they can get something better in return. Owners are trying to make money for a profit or stay in the “red” as a tax write off. Either way it’s all business. As a fan, if you want to switch teams because that’s where LeBron James goes, go ahead. No longer can you be criticized for your decision because of what players are doing now.  If you want to stay loyal to your Chicago Bulls because that’s what you grew up watching, go ahead. You will just have to suffer a little while because the next big free agency signing will be in a couple years. Fans everywhere need to be prepared for the next three season for players to say “Show me the money”.