NBA.com’s annual GM survey is usually a fun way to get a pulse on the way that the people within and running the NBA feel about the NBA.
Frankly, this year’s poll is not all that enlightening. GMs think the Golden State Warriors, LeBron James and Gregg Popovich are all really good.
Shocking, I know.
But there was an interesting nugget buried all the way at the bottom of the page. The GMs were asked about what rule they believe needed to be changed the most. Playoff seeding topped the list. The Draft Lottery system, which has since been amended, was second. The draft combine was next. Then the advance-the-ball rule. Then enforcing double dribbles, changing the goaltending rules, addressing the issue of fouling flailing jumpshooters and intentional fouls.
Only after all of that did the GMs list the age minimum, the rule that has created the one-and-done era of college basketball.
I’m not sure what this actually means. On the one hand, it can be looked at as the GMs are at least thinking about the fact that the current structure of the age limit rule is not ideal. But seeing where it pops up on this list – behind changing goaltending rules and enforcing double-dribbles, which I never really realized was a thing – makes me wonder just how much of a priority it is.
Over Adam Silver, the NBA commissioner, was vocal about identifying the age limit as something that the NBA is targeting for change. I wrote about it at the time. It was a big thing.
And it still may be a big thing. Frankly, it’s surprising that it has taken this long for the NBA to try and find a way to take ownership of the developmental ranks of basketball. But it is interesting where it lands in the mind of these GMs.
Maybe it’s not as pressing of an issue as we once thought?