Mar 29, 2014, 12:03 AM EST
LeBron James may take a break from winning the MVP award this season, but few would bother trying to argue that he doesn’t remain the game’s best player.
That widely-recognized designation doesn’t mean he’s the highest paid, though, and in fact, he barely cracks the top 10 this season due to the way the collective bargaining agreement places limits on what players can earn in the NBA system.
Other sports don’t have the same rules, so when a baseball player recently inked a 10-year deal that approached $300 million in total value, James couldn’t help but raise an eyebrow, and briefly wish that he was in a similar situation.
LeBron James says he was amazed and a little jealous when he heard Detroit Tigers star Miguel Cabrera signed a contract Friday that guarantees him $292 million over the next 10 years.
“I said ‘wow,’ ” James said before the Miami Heat played the Detroit Pistons on Friday. “I wish we (the NBA) didn’t have a salary cap.” …
“He’s the best player in baseball, and the best players in each sport should be rewarded,” James said. “It’d be nice to sign a 10-year deal worth $300 million.”
James makes the same as Chris Bosh at just over $19 million, which ties him for ninth in the league this season.
Baseball is a wreck of a sport without a salary cap unless you’re one of the large market teams, and despite what casual observers believe about the NBA, the system has largely created a level playing field, which is evident when you see teams like San Antonio and Oklahoma City routinely compete deep into the postseason.
What would be interesting, however, would be to see player salaries become uncapped, while team salary limitations remained in place. If that happened, James could command a similar contract to the one which he envies, but the team that signed him would have to be extremely creative in building a contending team around him with limited salary left to fill out the roster.
- Wesley Matthew’s injury will test Trail Blazers’ spacing 1
- Five Things We Learned in NBA Thursday: Nobody can stop E’Twaun Moore; Westbrook’s pretty good, too 8
- Training like the Pros: Recapping a month-long Nike Basketball workout experience 3
- Report: JaVale McGee can’t reach deal with Celtics 11
- Craig Sager makes long-awaited return to TNT after 11-month battle with leukemia 7
- Five Things We Learned in NBA Wednesday: Masked Russell Westbrook just needs a cape 20
- George Karl: Knicks could use a strong point guard next to Carmelo Anthony 14
- Ray Allen announces he will not play this season 14