Way back in 1999, nine million blog years ago, NBA fans learned just how many players lived paycheck to paycheck. Despite their multimillion dollar salaries, these guys still needed to get their checks to pay for their houses, cars and various friends who were on their payrolls. It’s this knowledge that leads a lot of people to assume that this season’s lockout will progress in the same way, eventually ending when the players realize they need to play basketball to make money. And even though the players union warned its players that they’d need to save money to tide themselves over during a work stoppage, these people’s assumptions will likely prove correct.

Except in the case of four lucky dudes who signed up with a smart agent before this whole thing came to fruition. They’ll be doing OK no matter what. From USA Today:

Los Angeles Clippers forward Al-Farouq Aminu wants to play basketball next season. But if he doesn’t, he isn’t overly concerned about his financial situation.

The Clippers’ Al-Farouq Aminu is one of a handful of players who will continue to get paid if the NBA lockout stretches into the upcoming season.

Aminu, a rookie last season, is one of four clients of agent Raymond Brothers who spread their 2010-11 salaries over 18 or 24 months to continue receiving paychecks if the league-imposed lockout forces the cancellation of games.NBA

Memphis Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph, Dallas Mavericks forward Caron Butler and Detroit Pistons guard Ben Gordon, all Brothers clients, have similar setups.

If games in 2011-12 are lost, “They will not know financially that they’re in a lockout,” Brothers said. “If there is a lockout, you’ll able to pay your bills. And you’re already used to a certain way of living because your paychecks will be consistent.”

Well played, Raymond Brothers. That’s how you get more players to sign more contracts in the future. When all these other guys are dipping in to their savings and selling their least favorite private jets, the Brothers bros will be enjoying their standard paychecks and all that that entails. Smart.

And it’s way smart from the players’ perspectives, obviously, having the foresight to agree to a contract that would pay them less bi-weekly but ensure that they’d keep their cash flow steady. Maybe that means they only bought one case of premium caviar per month, but it means they can keep buying those fish eggs from now until next season is over. Plus, and this is a total guess but it makes sense, whenever the next season starts, you have to assume that these players will get their 2011-12 paychecks while still bringing in their 2010-11 dollars at the same time. That’s double money and that’s when you splurge on the second gigantic 3D TV.

Great strategy, Raymond Brothers. You can be my NBA agent any day.

(via BDL)

Comments (11)

  1. And this is why you get an actual agent to negotiate your deals, and not just some guy you went to high school with.

  2. Stephen: I thought “The Decision” proved that.

  3. You mean to tell me getting a B+ in trigonometry isn’t that impressive?

  4. This is actually good for the team as well. Think of the interest they are making by holding back a full years salary. Teams are making interest and not having to share it with the players, seems good for them too. Its free money…sort of like a buddy giving you $6M to invest for them, however letting you keep the profit. I wish I had friends like that.

  5. Settons – well, if the agent was really smart, he’d just work out an annuity scheme so that his client would get to keep the interest, or negotiate that into the contract. But I’m sure there’s NBA regulations against that level of financial trickery.

  6. This is asinine. It’s pretty sad that these players need someone to forcibly budget their money. Here’s a thought; they could have already been paid and invested this money wisely so as to profit from it. The fact that they are thought to be smart because someone has to make sure they don’t blow through their money is ridiculous.

  7. This is moronic. This ‘great deal’ the agent negotiated is essentially just an interest free loan to the owners. Its sad that players are so irresponsible that they need to have their salaries withheld in order to not blow it all. Think of the interest they could be making on this money. Even at a 1% interest rate a guy like Randolph could be making 50-100k off of the deferred portion of his salary. More than a lot of people make in a year.

  8. Put that money in a savings account and make more than the average makes a year.

  9. Is it bad that I thought the picture of zach randolph was at first antoine walker?

  10. It may be moronic, but I think it shows some maturity or wisdom to know what your weaknesses are and create a structure to protect you from yourself. Your weaknesses obvs. don’t include financial excess, so good for you. Perhaps the agent should have structured it so as not to include the interest free loan to the club, but it’s a negotiation, and I doubt team ownership wanted to add a time value of money adder, but I could be wrong

  11. The assumption you guys make that “keeps getting paychecks” means “leaves the money in the team’s hands” is silly. This is almost certainly a plan whereby the agent sends the player half the money (minus his commission) and puts the other half in an account. When the new checks stop coming, the account is drawn down in the same amount.

    This idea that player agents are idiots and you guys are geniuses is pretty stupid.

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