Adam Silver wants the NBA Draft to increase their age limit to 20 years old, meaning that high school basketball players will be looking at being two-and-through athletes instead of one-and-done players.
It’s two-fold: Not only would NBA teams be able to get an extra year of college basketball to study the prospects but the owners would miss out on paying a year’s worth of salary on players that are still developing. One and done players aren’t finished products as rookies. They aren’t in their second season in the NBA either, but they’re A) closer to it and B) will be closer to their prime by the time their rookie deals come to an end.
It makes perfect sense for the owners, who Silver represents.
Just like it makes perfect sense that Michelle Roberts, the director of the Player’s Union, wants to get rid of the one-and-done rule and implement an 18-year old age limit. Those players have value at that age. NBA teams would gladly roster them, it would means the athletes could start earning NBA salaries a year earlier, get off their rookie deals a year earlier, be eligible for 10-year veteran max deals a year earlier, extend the life of their professional careers by a year. Need I go on?
Anyway, the result is the impasse that we’re currently at, the one where college basketball takes the biggest hit, because it’s a middle ground. And it doesn’t seem like it’s a rule that is going to be changing anytime soon. From an interview Silver did with Bloomberg News:
It’s still something I care a lot about. I’m also a realist. Given that Michele has said her preference would be for an 18-year-old minimum age, my sense is that it’s not something that’s going to change in the short term. And by the way, I’ve always said I understand the other side of the issue, about a young man’s opportunity to make a living. But my view has always been that we’d be a better league if players came into the draft at 20 instead of 19.
In other words, those one-and-done players that we have to get to know every November and shuttle off to the NBA every April?
They’re not going anywhere.