The Internet has made the world a very small place. In the last few hours, rumors have swirled that Trevor Ariza might now be having second thoughts about his deal with the Houston Rockets. The source of the rumors isn’t exactly known, but ESPN radio in Los Angeles had Ariza’s agent on and asked him if there was any truth to the rumor. He answered “no comment.” Is it a coincidence that Mike Brown and Danny Ferry are in Los Angeles today?
This brings up a question- when is a deal a deal? The Houston Rockets had a verbal agreement from Ariza (or at least that is what was reported) to play in Houston for the next 5 years. His compensation was reported to be $34 million dollars. The first day that teams are allowed to sign players to new deals is July 8th. Technically, Ariza is still a free agent. Until the ink is applied to a contract he may speak to whomever he chooses about his basketball future.
Again, these are rumors- but if Brown and Ferry flew to Los Angeles to meet with a player that already had an agreement with another team would you have a problem with that? Isn’t this the same thing that Cleveland fans hate Carlos Boozer for? Didn’t Boozer have a verbal agreement and decide to take a bigger payday with the Utah Jazz?
Perhaps the better question would be this- if the Cavs had a verbal agreement from Ron Artest to play next year in Cleveland for the MLE and Phil Jackson flew across the country to talk him into signing with L.A. would you have a problem with it?