Man, NBA executives have got wicked good drugs. How else can one explain that Rudy F. Gay getting a max contract from Memphis wasn't even close to the worst deal done at the beginning of free agency.
Don't get me wrong, it's pretty bad. Rudy went for 17 points and 5 rebounds per game with more turnovers than assists last year and he's a max guy?
But you have to consider that the T-Wolves are signing Darko Milicic for $20 million and the Bucks are going to go for Drew "8 teams in 8 years" Gooden at $32 million.
I know that's chump change compared to what will get thrown at LeBron et al, but you have to remember that Darko and Drew are completely and totally worthless! Seriously, they should be playing in a rec league somewhere.
As bad as those deals are though, they pale in comparison to the worst deal done so far, which is Atlanta signing Joe Johnson for 6 years at $119 million.
People, Joe Johnson is a ball-pounding machine who makes his teammates worse, not better! Plus he'll be 29 when next season starts. So the Hawks will be paying him over 20 million a year when he's 34 and 35 (i.e. unable to do even the crappy stuff he does now).
So far, Joe's career averages are 17 points, 4 boards and 4 assists per game.
This is a signing worthy of the Knicks. In fact, if they give a 5 year guaranteed max contract to Amar'e Stoudemire, that will be ultra dumb, but nowhere near as bad a move as what Atlanta has just done.
So whatever those NBA suits in Atlanta, Milwaukee, Minnesota and NYC are smoking, sign me up!
And thank goodness for Sam Presti.