In a recent discussion over here dfjmed made a good observation that got me thinking about the difficulties of the Spurs making a trade. To me it’s the same reason behind why the organization mostly looks to foreign pickups, waiver wire finds, and the draft to add to the roster – and it’s tied in with the way we avoid bad contracts and sign high character guys who care more about getting championships than getting paid.
So, here it is. If our players are being paid at below market level for their services, then any time we trade, we’d have to include an additional player, just to make the salaries work. If we don’t have any contracts that are killing us, then we can’t dump someone on an unsuspecting GM or force them to take our trash if they want our treasure. So we’ll never get equal value, because the market is overpaying for what they have. So, a guy who may be as good as Tony or Manu would be making more. Then, as soon as we start looking at guys who make the same amount as the Sickness and Frenchie, then the first thing we think is, "I don’t want any of those guys."
I’ll admit I’m not a Trade Machine genius, but it occurs to me that, in addition to the kind of players we have (e.g. "Yeah, he’s a spur.") the reason it’s so difficult for us to make a deal with other teams is because we’ve made such good deals in signing our guys.