NBA Free Agency Decided to Transcend Time as We Know It

Adam Silver makes a lousy Santa Claus – well, except for the fact that he can slip easily down a chimney.
But excuse him his thin, reedy ho-ho-hos and his lack of facial hair that looks like a bleached rhododendron and his posture as a coat rack with  $750 shoes. He's the front man for the NBA's "Adderall Christmas In July" promotion, and even though he's not providing the presents any more than the fictional Skippy J. Claus fellow does, someone has to get credit for this glorious insanity.
Paul George to Oklahoma City (WHAT?). Blake Griffin staying in Los Angeles (THE HELL YOU SAY!). Ricky Rubio is traded to Minnesota to make more room for a big score by Minnesota (WT COMPLETE AND UTTER F?). Andre Iguodala now being courted by more teams that actually exist, to the point where he may not be a Warrior at all by the start of summer league (WELL I'LL BE A SON OF A BI . . .).
This is year's worth of business in a few hours, and the trade deadline hadn't even begun yet. It is as if the NBA has decided to transcend time as we understand it and work at warp speed to keep your attention.
And it's brilliant. Not sustainable, I grant you, unless Silver can convince his 30 bosses to move up the 2018 free agency season up a year to completely destroy baseball and half of football along the way. But brilliant.
Of course, the Golden State Warriors can take some credit for this MDMA-fueled festival of roasted money, but they may end up being off-season losers if Iguodala sees the kind of money and term that blows the Warriors' salary-cap strategy out of the sea.
And who saw that coming?
Hell, who saw any of this coming? I mean, over time, sure, Griffin would go somewhere and George would be in a new home and Rubio and Iguodala blah-blah-blah-de-blah-blah, but it is as if the NBA took the entire summer and said to its 30 billionaire constituents, "Do your business by the Fourth, because we're closing until October."
And it's as if the owners, who don't need a lot of reasons to hurl money around to impress their colleagues with their fiscal drunkenness, complied with a vengeance.
In other words, Gordon Hayward is now the last turkey in the shop, public appeal-wise. Whether he stays in Utah, goes to Boston or decides to give Maccabi Tel Aviv a whirl for snicks and giggles, his future pales (no pun intended – okay, maybe a bit) in comparison to what has happened since the Warriors had their parade.
And Kyle Lowry? A fascinating afterthought, all things considered.
And LeBron James in 2018? I would put your pink slip on the notion that he might try to become the first player in any team sport to play for two teams simultaneously – just to have that engraved on his Hall of Fame plaque.
(In fairness, I would put your pink slip on a race between two paralytic hens, but that's a different matter entirely).
The point is, put simply, the NBA is beating the hell out of summer. It is rendering the NFL Combine the ridiculous running of mesomorphs in their underwear that it actually is. It is obliterating Astros Summer. Cristiano Ronaldo would have to meet Lionel Messi in an internationally-televised duel to even make the crawl.
The facts as they fly are even outrunning the rumor mill, which usually dominates the free agency period because there is usually a lot more free-flying fertilizer this time of year than actual mulch. That is an amazing feat given our ability to ceaselessly yammer nonsense on demand.
Whoever had this idea to go all-in on moving every player at once deserves a serious big-time-stylee raise, if only to ruin the assumptions that the league would go radio silent for a year or so until this Warrior fetish ran its course. Those are clearly blown to smithereens now, alongside the horrifying concept of a Ball Family Summer. The league murdered that, revived it and then killed it again, and we are eternally in your debt for that.
So with that, we shout out the traditional toast, "SOCIABLE!" and raise our glasses to you, Silver Claus. You may not wear the suit well, and you may not have even had much of a hand in this Ritalin-crazed shopping spree, but damn it, someone's got to take credit for breaking the Warrior-rooted ennui of the recent past and future and the tanking conspiracies that fill in the spaces between hot Kevin Durant takes.
If those things still exist, that is.

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